Eugenia M. Shepard

Thu, 03/02/2023 - 2:45pm

Eugenia Melzar Shepard died at home in Boothbay Harbor on March 1, 2023.

Born on Jan. 28, 1928 in Arlington, Massachusetts, daughter of Harold and Edna (McKusick) Melzar, she spent her childhood in Wilmington, Massachusetts. Her family delighted in spending summers with Caswell and Chase relatives on Cross Point in Edgecomb, until the Melzars purchased a summer home on Oak Point in Boothbay Harbor.

Eugenia graduated from the University of Maine (Orono) in 1949. A few weeks later she married her beloved Robert, whom she had met a few summers earlier across Moffat Cove. From their first date on the Shepard family sailboat, Allegro, they shared a love of sailing that lasted throughout their marriage. With Eugenia always at the helm, they cruised every summer into their 80s, introducing their children to Maine as seen from the water, and joining with the Boothbay Harbor Yacht Club in their later years.

Eugenia and Bob found great joy in singing – with family, with community groups, and in church choirs nearly their entire married life. Many deep and lasting friendships developed during their years with the Sheepscot Valley Chorus and with the choir at the Congregational Church of Boothbay Harbor. She also was creative in artistic ways – particularly adept at arranging flowers, decorating birthday cakes and creating afghans. She excelled as a card player, was a fanatic for puzzles of all kinds, and remained an avid reader of mysteries and historical novels.

Multiple groups benefited from Eugenia’s organizing skill, combined with her knack for creating things of beauty: the Boxford Garden Club, when she lived in Massachusetts; the P.E.O. Sisterhood (which she served as State Chapter President in Massachusetts and as a faithful member in Maine until her death); and church women’s organizations. First and foremost, though, she found her greatest rewards in making a warm home for Bob and their four children. She was an excellent cook and her hospitality was legendary among extended family, Bob’s colleagues and students, and many friends far and wide.

Eugenia was predeceased by her husband, Robert, and son, Alan.

Survivors include brother-in-law Barclay Shepard; daughters Marjorie “Jamie” (Thomas) Knobloch, and Virginia Rickeman (and friend Vicki Haugen); son Andrew (Judith) Shepard; grandchildren Sarah (Daniel) Olney, Rachel (Darian) Higgins, Matthew (and fiancée Rebecca) Rickeman, Thomas (Andrea) Rickeman, Steven (Patricia) Shepard, Benjamin (Amanda) Shepard. Thirteen great-grandchildren brought her much joy: Solomon Olney, Jack and Elliot Higgins, Jones Rickeman, Eleanor and Henry Rickeman, Lorrin, Paul, Cordelia and Louise Shepard; Andrew, Harper, and Isla Shepard. She will also be missed by many beloved nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. on April 1 at the Congregational Church of Boothbay Harbor. In lieu of flowers, if you wish, you may honor her memory with a gift to the music fund of the church.

Arrangements are entrusted to Hall Funeral Home and Crematory, 975 Wiscasset Road, Boothbay.

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