Alan Huff Sheppard, VL ’69

Alan Huff Sheppard, born February 11, 1947, passed away peacefully on August 23, 2022. He is survived by his wife, Willa (Mann) Sheppard; children, Crickett Walljasper (Mike), John Sheppard, Amanda Day (Mike) and Samantha Zelezen (Adam); and sister, Elizabeth (Alan Jordan). Alan was the proud Papa to nine grandchildren, Shiloh, Caden, Isabella, Jacob, Elijah, Christian, Catlyn, Laura and Violet. His grandchildren were his pride and joy. Alan was preceded in death by his first wife, Kathy; and son, Travis.

Alan grew up in Palos Verdes Estates and Palo Alto, where he graduated from Palo Alto High School in 1965. He then received a Mechanical Engineering degree from Lehigh University in 1970 where he was a member of Kappa Alpha Society. Thereafter, Alan was drafted and proudly served the US Army during the Vietnam War. In his professional career, Alan was most passionate about the work he did in the convention and events industry. Alan purchased Convention Decorating Service (later CDS Events) in 1989, based in San Antonio, TX. He loved the work and considered his employees family. He grew CDS for many years until his retirement when he sold it to his son, John.

Alan and Willa married in 1997. Their love and affection for one another was visible to all who saw them together. Alan and Willa enjoyed traveling and were able to fulfill many items on their bucket list, including Africa, Thailand, New Zealand and more. The outdoors was where Alan could relax; watching the sunrise with a hot cup of camp coffee, hiking parts of the Appalachian Trail, or riding Harleys.

Alan loved sports. In his younger years, he was a soccer and baseball coach for both of his sons. Never losing his gift for coaching, he could often be found giving pointers to his grandchildren in his later years. The “Papa Catch” will forever be remembered on his favorite beach in Kaanapali, Maui. He also proudly supported (in both good and bad times) the San Francisco 49ers, San Francisco Giants, and the San Antonio Spurs.

Alan’s hearty laugh, strong hugs, generosity, wit and wisdom are missed by all. A special thanks to Bridge Hospice, Vaca Valley Living, and his numerous caregivers. In lieu of flowers, consider a donation to The Parkinson’s Foundation or The Michael J Fox Foundation.

This obituary was taken in part from The Reporter, published September 11, 2022.