Matthew Joel Shepard

Published 9:39 am Wednesday, May 31, 2023

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Matthew Joel Shepard, 42, of San Diego, Ca., formerly of Tallahassee, passed away August 17, 2022. 

The family will hold a memorial service 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, June 6, 2023, at The Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints with Bishop Jason Keyton officiating. Interment will be at Bethel Baptist Church Cemetery.

The family will receive friends immediately following the service. Online visitors may sign the guest register at Memorial donations may be made to The Samaritan Counseling Center of Southwest Georgia, PO Box 1276, Bainbridge, GA 39818. 

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Matthew Joel Shepard was born November 21, 1979, at Shaw Air Force Base in Sumter County, SC, the son of James Jr. and Pamela Rudd Shepard. He was a graduate of Crestview High School in Crestview, Fla. Matthew worked retail in customer service for a number of years and was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 

Matthew lived the life of a military brat at various duty stations where he developed the art of reading people. This gift served him well over the years he spent in customer service. Cracker Barrel guests were bound to have a bag full of trinkets & what-nots if Matthew was working; he had you sold from “Let me show you…” Omaha, NE was his favorite of all the duty stations, and he often shared fond memories of his time there. His happy childhood was filled with a shared love of baseball. His dad spent hours tossing the ball learning early on Matthew was a talented pitcher. He was quite the artist channeling his creativity into abstract drawings and paintings. Matthew’s beautiful smile and unforgettable laugh were glimpses of the joy he felt in his heart for his children.

Survivors include his sons, Jackson Shepard and Benjamin Shepard both of Litiz, Penn.; his parents, James Jr. & Pamela Shepard of Thomasville; and his paternal grandmother, Eudonis Shepard of Bainbridge. Matthew was preceded in death by his paternal grandfather, James Shepard, Sr., and his maternal grandparents, Curtis & Imogene Rudd.

Bryant Funeral Home, located at 105 N. Florida Street, is assisting the family with arrangements. (229-246-3321)