Melva Joanne (McClaughry) Shephard, 88, of Woodstock, died Saturday, April 28, 2018, at home surrounded by her family.
She was born Sept. 25, 1929, in Meadville, Pennsylvania, to Joseph and Hettie May (Miller) McClaughry. She married Edward Eugene Shephard on June 22, 1952, in Berkeley California.
Melva and her family moved when she was an infant to Lancaster, California, where she spent her childhood until she went off to college at the University of California-Berkley. She graduated with honors with a degree in microbiology. While in college, she met the love of her life, Edward Eugene Shephard (Gene). Gene and Melva were married for almost 59 years.
Melva was an avid reader and constant and lifelong learner. She enjoyed thoughtful conversations with her children and grandchildren. She fulfilled her dream of a life of adventure after she and Gene married. They lived for four years in Ioninna, Greece, and made numerous trips to Mexico, as well as to New Zealand, Australia, Switzerland and most of Europe. While living in Greece, Melva homeschooled all three of her children. She never returned to her real passion of science but worked full time in administrative positions until she retired in 2001.
She is survived by three children, Rebecca Shephard, Steve Shephard (Debbie) and Amy Swanson (Scott); five grandchildren, Elizabeth Jordy, Taylor Shephard, Samuel Shephard (fiancé, Colleen Shuda), Marta Haight (John), and Bjorn Swanson; and a great-grandson, Jeremiah.
She was preceeded in death by her parents, Joseph and Hettie May (Miller) McClaughry; husband, Gene; two brothers, Paul and Bob; a sister, Kathryn; and a grandson, Anders Swanson.
Melva donated her remains to the Anatomical Gift Association of Illinois.
A memorial gathering will be from 2 to 7 p.m. Sunday, May 27, at 860 Serene Trail, Woodstock.
Contributions may be made to JourneyCare.org.