08/29/1928 - 11/12/2021
Service Date: 11/19/2021
Service Time: 5 PM
Service Location: Gilbert Memorial Park 2100 East Queen Creek Road Gilbert, AZ 85297
Visitation Date: 11/19/2021
Visitation Time: 4 PM
Visitation Location: Gilbert Memorial Park
Interment: Woodlawn National Cemetery

*To view the service on Friday please click  below*

On November 12th 2021, Myrtle Frances Shepard peacefully transitioned to her eternal life.

She was born on August 29th 1928 in Elmira, New York to Frederick Warner Brown Jr. and Ethel May Swann Brown.

Growing up in Elmira, Myrtle had many friends, always enjoyed a good laugh and was known to be quite gregarious. Myrtles’ lifelong, friend Jean Ward recalled stories about the “Golden Girls” which included Myrtle, the late Annie Jones, Ida Ward and Artiemeasia Coleman. Together the “Golden Girls” were famous in Elmira during the fabulous forties and fifties, and they enjoyed dancing, going to the Neighborhood House, and socializing together.

Myrtle married the love of her life, Jack S. Shepard Sr. in 1949 and to this union three children were born, Jack, Gary and daughter Lori. Myrtle created a warm and loving home environment for her family and enjoyed decorating and remodeling. She also enjoyed cooking and canning, crocheting and a variety of arts and crafts which included pottery making.

Throughout her life Myrtle enjoyed camping, family road trips and international travel which included trips to England and Germany. One of her travel highlights was a trip with her good friend Annie Ruth to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania to visit her sister, Doris who worked for the US Embassy.

She was an active member of the Frederick Douglas AME Zion church in Elmira and together with her husband instilled strong Christian values in their children.

Myrtle had a fulfilling twenty-five year career with the Elmira School System where she worked as a Teachers’ Assistant in several elementary schools.

Several years after her husband passed, Myrtle relocated to Las Vegas Nevada, where she lived with her daughter and granddaughter, Halla who lovingly cared for her. She later relocated to Gilbert, Arizona and recently resided with son, Gary and daughter-in law Angela who cared for her with love until she passed.  In recent years, Myrtle became an avid LA Laker fan and voraciously watched the news.

Myrtle leaves to cherish her memory sister, Doris McGruder Hoffman, sons Jack Shepard (Joya), Gary Shepard (Angela) and daughter Lori Shepard, granddaughters, Nicole Baudanza (Gabriel), Christine Shepard, Stephanie Shepard-Mathews (Michael), Halla Shepard-Wolfe and great grandchildren, Isaiah, Machaela, Elliot, Evan, Elias, David, Chloe and Devin.

In addition to her parents, Myrtle was also preceded in death by her husband, Jack Shepard, Sr., sisters, Ellen May Bates, Shirley Ann Williams, brothers, Frederick (Buddy) Brown, Raymond Louis Brown, Vernon George Brown, Theodore Charles Brown, Richard Douglas Brown,

Myrtle will be fondly remembered for her strength, good cheer, sassiness and humor.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to https://support.woundedwarriorproject.org/ in her memory.

Arrangements by Gilbert Memorial Park, www.gilbertmemorialpark.com. Should this obituary appear anywhere but gilbertmemorialpark.com, please check our website for accurate details and service information.


  • Debbie A Mahoney

    It was an honor to care for Myrtle. A pure joy to work with this family. She will truly be missed. What excitement she brought to my days.

  • I truly enjoyed meeting Ms. Myrtle and caring for her. Although I only knew her for a short time I feel like I’ve known her much longer. She will forever be in my heart. Rest well Myrtle.

  • I am honored and blessed to have had the opportunity to care for and know this beautiful soul!! I always looked forward to seeing Miss Myrtle and her amazing family! There wasn’t a day I ever left their house without laughing and having a smile on my face. She was such a sweetheart but don’t get me wrong, you couldn’t underestimate her strength and sass, (she would tell you her thoughts honestly)!! My condolences to all her family and friends as we share in the loss of this kind spirit.

  • Steadman and Trish Nichols

    Sending Love and Condolences to the Shepard Family.

  • It was an honor to be united in our extended family for the past 40 years. She always filled the room with love and cheer. We will always cherish her kindness and quick wit.
    With love, prayers for God’s Blessing of Eternal Life, Barry, Brigit, Erin, Brendan Boyd, Jason Harris and family.

  • Gregory Riley Sr. and family

    “My hope is that when I depart and I can be no service to those that I love. My hope is that I shall hear the sounds of laughter rather than the sounds of weeping. And I hope that they will say ‘I’m glad she was here, rather than, I’m sorry she is gone’.”

  • Darryl and Tita Hutson

    With deepest condolences and love to the Sheppard family. The home going service for Mrs. Sheppard will be a celebration of her lifes journey and the acknowledgment of her successful life with the family that she leaves behind.
    Much love

  • Robin & James Jackson

    Extending our sincere condolences to Jack, Joya and the entire Shepard family. Your mother’s beautiful legacy will live on through each of you.
    May your beloved mom rest peacefully in the loving arms of our savior.

  • Vannessa, Michael and Angelique

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and the family during this time. May God wrap His loving arms around you and fill you with His deepest love.

    The God of love and peace will be with you.
    2 Corinthians 13:11 NCV

  • Jerry and Barbara Shepard

    Although we hadn’t seen Aunt Myrt in far too many years we have fond memories of her. One that stands out is her and Aunt Annie Ruth enjoying a Red Lobster meal with us in Denver. We had a hilarious time teaching them to crack and eat crab legs. Praying that all the good memories will comfort you all at this very difficult time. Our deepest condolences.

  • Muftau & Monica Alabi

    We extend our condolences to your family, may the great memories of her life comfort you. I remember her hanging with us at Newport Jazz festival in Saratoga, New York in the early 1990. She was very energetic & humorous.

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