Deceased April 29, 2015
Tom Shepard died on April 29, 2015, in Sarasota, Fla. A Depression-era riches to rags story, Tom was on scholarship and waited tables at his fraternity, Delta Upsilon. Decidedly interested in the Smith ladies, Tom almost flunked out after sophomore year but bet Dean Porter he could make Phi Beta Kappa grades by the end of his junior year. He did just that. Years later, after DU was renamed the C. Scott Porter House, Tom would often pause to remember his favorite Dean.
Following graduation, Tom joined the Vick Chemical Company and married Nancy Kruidenier, Smith ‘41. After Pearl Harbor, he joined the Navy and was assigned to the USS Robert F. Keller (DE-419) as a gunnery officer, serving in six major Pacific battles, conning the ship through Halsey’s Typhoon, and becoming Executive Officer. In 1946, Tom joined Look Magazine and eventually settled in Greenwich, Conn. When the magazine folded in 1971, he was publisher. In retirement, Tom traveled the world with Nancy, his wife of 73 years, stayed current with the news and remained deeply involved with his beloved Amherst. In 1990, he received the Eminent Service Medal. He was president of his class for 20 years and in his quarterly letters admonished classmates to “stay vertical!” His Amherst legacy includes his brother Jack Shepard ‘49, brother-in-law Peter Kruidenier ‘53, nephew Rob Shepard ‘82, son Rocky ‘73, and grandchildren Ashley Lunkenheimer ‘96 and Brian Shepard ‘01.
|Rocky Shepard ’73, Ashley Lunkenheimer ’96, Tom and
Brian Shepard ’01
Tom had four children, nine grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. Among multiple great stories, Rocky fondly remembers Tom celebrating his 21st birthday at DU with a keg of beer and a poster of baby “Rock The Jock” in an Amherst sweater; Brian remembers crashing Tom’s 60th reunion with his friends; and Ashley has never forgotten Tom’s tale of streaking naked across the campus to earn $5 to date her grandmother!
Sue (Shepard) Jaques