Selma's Story

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FLY CREEK _ Selma D. Shepard, a longtime resident of Fly Creek, died Monday morning, Sept. 19, 2011, at Otsego Manor. She was 85.
Born April 1, 1926, at home in the Town of Oneonta, near West Davenport, she was the daughter of C. Burnett and Florence C. (Hoag) Deuel. At the age of 4, Selma and her family moved to Mount Vision. After graduating from high school, she began working as a nurses’ aide at Mary Imogene Bassett Hospital in 1949.
On Sept. 2, 1951, Selma married William Duane Shepard in a ceremony at the Bible Baptist Church in Mount Vision and in 1952, they settled in Fly Creek. That  same year Selma decided tostay at home and take care of her home and family. It was during this time that the Shepards took in a total of six foster children.
Selma later became a caregiver to the Clark family seamstress and then went back to work at Mary Imogene Bassett Hospital as a senior nurses’ aide, retiring in 1985. According to many, the patients always liked her.
Raised in the Baptist faith, she and her family all became members of the Fly Creek United Methodist Church when they moved to Fly Creek. She always maintained a special place in her heart for the Baptist Church, and in later years often attended the First Baptist Church of Cooperstown. Selma is survived by one son, Duane William Shepard; one daughter, Diane; one son-in-law; one granddaughter; four sisters-in-law, Minnie Deuel, Lois Deuel, Murl Gregory, and E. Jean Shepard; one brother-in-law, Dean F. Shepard; and several nieces and nephews.
She was predeceased by her husband of 52 years, Bill Shepard, who died May 20, 2004; four brothers, Nelson Deuel, who died in 1941, Merle G. Deuel, who died in 1984, Harold M. Deuel, who died in 1993, and Neelan E. (“Neel”) Deuel, who died in 2008.
Friends called at the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home, 82 Chestnut St., Cooperstown, from 2 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2011.
A funeral service will be offered at the funeral home at 2 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, 2011, with the Rev. Douglas Deer, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Cooperstown, officiating. Burial will follow in the Fly Creek Valley Cemetery, Fly Creek.
As an alternative to flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the American Heart Association, Heart Gifts Processing Center, P.O. Box 3049, Syracuse, NY 13220.
Funeral arrangements are under the guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown
Published on  September 26, 2011
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