Thursday, July 10, 2014

Wedding Bells in California, July 10, 2014

Only in the family can so many extremes
be reconciled and synthesized.
Only in the family do we have a lifetime
in which to do it.
~Letty Cottin Pogrebin

Greetings to all of you from the mountains of California's Sierra Nevada. Cindy and I and our granddaughter Preslea are enjoying the trails and views, the flora and fauna of one of the most beautiful places on earth. In the early 1950s, when I was a pre-schooler, my family, including my grandparents Leroy and Nola Gower, first introduced me to this remarkable area. It is now our turn to share with our granddaughter the wonders of this scenic treasure.
The first picture was taken yesterday and shows Preslea, Cindy and me with the crest of the Sierra Nevada, including The Minarets, behind us.

Remem- bering Nola Shannon Gower. Speaking of my Gower grandparents, it was 10 years ago yesterday that my grandmother Nola Shannon Gower died. At 101 years old she was the oldest person in our family that I ever knew, but more importantly she was a wonderful human being: down home, resourceful, resilient, faithful, healthy, and always respectful of family. She will always be remembered as a remarkable person whose influence is reflected in her descendants when at their best.

Congratu- lations Joan and Dee! Congratu- lations to my cousin Joan Shepard, one of the grandchildren of Will and Bura Shepard, and the daughter of the late Elmer and Beryl Shepard. Joan and her partner Dee Shannon were married this past Monday in Davis, California in a beautiful family gathering at the U.C. Davis Arboretum. The ceremony included their 3 children and a few other family members, including Cindy and me and our granddaughter Preslea. It was my privilege to officiate at the ceremony. The second picture shows Dee and Joan and me right after the ceremony.

The third picture shows our larger Shepard family 47 years ago in a holiday gathering at Elmer and Beryl Shepard's home outside San Diego in 1967. 
I am including this picture because in it are the Shepards mentioned in the previous paragraph: Joan (far left), William and Bura (near left), Elmer (far right) and Beryl (just right of center), and myself (behind Beryl). Also included in this family picture are most of the other children and grandchildren of Will and Bura Shepard at the time: Beverly, Barbara, Pauline, Phil, Russell, Kim, Dane, Rex, Ellen, Eric, Eugene, Darrell, Maida, Linda and Bill.
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Steve Shepard

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