In In Memoriam

December 07, 1942, November 21, 2017

Dr. Sallye Jeannette Sheppeard of Beaumont died on Tuesday, November 21, 2017. She was born on December 7, 1942 in Galveston to Mattie Lucille Click and Gabe Sheppeard.

Dr. Sheppeard retired in 2008 from Lamar University after twenty-eight years as Professor of English and eleven years as Chair of the Department of English and Modern Languages. She held a Bachelor of Arts in Religion and History and Master of Arts in American Literature from Texas Christian University, a Masters in Religious Education in Theology from Brite Divinity School, a Doctor of Philosophy in British Literature and Rhetoric from Texas Woman’s University, and a Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy in Mythological Studies from Pacifica Graduate Institute. Dr. Sheppeard was a pioneering scholar, dedicated teacher, generous mentor, and significant contributor to the fields of renaissance literature and mythological studies. She was an author, editor, and contributor to dozens of scholarly articles, reviews, books, and papers, including recent articles on Euripides’ Medea, Penelope in The Odyssey, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and the comic book heroine Black Orchid. Dr. Sheppeard was especially proud of her work in 1998 in developing the core curriculum for Dar al-Hekma College, the first private women’s college in Saudi Arabia. She was also a founding director of Beaumont’s “I Have a Dream” program, which has matched hundreds of students with adult mentors committed to helping them successfully graduate from high school. In addition to her many academic awards, grants and professional associations, she was a member of the Theta Phi National Honor Society in Theology and Sigma Tau Delta National Honor Society in English. Dr. Sheppeard was also an active member and officer of the Beaumont Interfaith Choral Society.

Dr. Sheppeard is survived by her spouse of thirty-six years, Judy Dian Brunton; her nephew, Philip Arlen Manning, Jr. of Austin; her niece, Rev. Meredith Manning Brown and her husband Rev. Curtis Brown, and great-nieces Joy Brown and Charis Brown, all of Lacey, Washington; her brother-in-law, Jim Brunton and his wife Kathy Brunton of Amarillo, and nieces Jennifer Brunton Cox of Houston and Jillian Brunton of Amarillo; her brother-in-law Joey Brunton and his wife Tonya Brunton of Amarillo; her nephew Jace Swihart of Killeen, her three cats, Tika, Lillie, and Zora, all of Beaumont; and numerous additional family and friends.

She is preceded in death by her parents; her sister, Nancy Lou Sheppeard Manning Atkinson; and her great-nephew Gabriel Manning Brown.

Dr. Sheppeard spent the last five years surrounded by family and friends confronting cancer with grace and patience. She and Judy give thanks for the assistance and care provided by so many generous people, especially her friends, Linda Hargraves, Mary Locke Crofts, Donna Hall and Renee Field, her neighbors in Beaumont, friends from Pacifica Graduate Institute, colleagues at Lamar University, and Harbor Hospice.
A gathering of Dr. Sheppeard’s family and friends will begin at 1:00 p.m., with her funeral service to follow at 2:00 p.m., Saturday, November 25, 2017, at Broussard’s, 1605 North Major Drive, Beaumont. A graveside service will be at 2:00 p.m., Sunday, November 26, 2017, at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, 4955 Pine Street, Beaumont.

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