Home' The Mt Barker Courier : The Courier - 2016-03-09 Contents PAGE 12 – The Courier Wednesday, March 9, 2016
Lena Mary Shephard
July 24, 1943 –
February 15, 2016
By Elisa Rose
From her earliest years to her very last,
Lena Shephard was a woman full of life
and passion for her family and community.
Born in 1943 to Giovanni and Tersilia Manna,
she grew up in Bridgewater – one of eight
siblings – and attended the local primary
Being deaf from the age of three Lena found
lessons difficult but never considered her
deafness a disability.
Lena moved from Bridgewater to a farm at
Nairne when she married the love of her life,
Gilbert Shephard, whom she met through the
Deaf Club in Adelaide.
She embraced farming life with full
enthusiasm and her love for people and cooking
combined as she made chocolate cakes for the
Deaf Club, cooked roasts for the shearers or
welcomed extras around her dinner table.
Lena loved her family, taking pride in
watching her two children play sports, and
more recently, in telling anyone she met about
her five grandchildren.
Her daughter Tania Jackson said she always
took an interest in others.
“She was a loyal friend and family member
she was always interested in what everyone
was doing,” she said.
Australian Deaf Games
She also loved her community, both in the
Hills and at the Deaf Club.
She was involved in the Australian Deaf
Games, winning many medals and donated
meat trays to Hills organisations, including the
Mt Barker Catholic School which her children
She volunteered in the Brukunga CFS
auxiliary, at the Nairne Market and the Lion’s
Hearing Dogs and in 2004 was recognised
for her service to the Nairne Bremer United
Football Club through life membership.
In 2006 she was awarded the Nairne Lion’s
Citizen of the Year, making her family
Having many skills, Lena was always happy
to share her talents with other people.
She worked for the Hills Football League
for many years, making their premiership
pennants, sewed wedding dresses for friends
and family – a passion she turned into a
business – and helped local organisations with
Lena’s interests were varied and she took
pride in her crafts which included wood-carving,
lead-lighting and spinning and weaving.
She loved to be active, trying her hand at
sports from netball, to horse-riding, table-tennis
and bowling, and she was not one to let her age
or health get in the way of new experiences.
In 2011 after being diagnosed with bowel
cancer for the second time, she created a “bucket
list” which saw her elephant-ride in Thailand,
watch a football game at the MCG with her son-
in-law, travel to the Victorian snowfields to see
snow for the first time and sky-dive for her 70th
As her health deteriorated her zest for life
did not and in January, despite her frail state,
she competed in the Australian Deaf Games,
winning several medals.
Mrs Jackson said her mother’s passion for life
was an example to others.
“Mum was so energetic, an example to us all of
how to live a life and live it well,” she said.
“She was the definition of resilient and always
saw the good in people and made the best of
In February 2016 Lena lost her battle with
bowel cancer but Mrs Jackson said her legacy
would always be remembered.
“We will always remember the passion and
that great big warm smile that was just her,
every day – no matter what,” she said.
Lena is survived by her two children, Tania
Jackson and Matt Shephard – their partners
Ray Jackson and Danielle Pearce – five
grandchildren, Finley, Harvey, Kennedy, Lainie
and Archer and four siblings, Adele, Laurie,
John and Peter.
Lena’s passion for life an example to others
The Mt Barker
caravan park will
from future five-
after the town’s
council agreed to
honor the historical
bequest of a parcel
of land nearly 120
The Mt Barker
Council will intro-
duce a Community
Policy Area over the
2.97ha portion of
land – occupied by
the caravan park –
which was gifted to
the community as a
space for recreation
by Dr Leonard Bickle
Last year it wanted
to allow buildings up
to five storeys high
on that land as well
as on land currently
used by the Park n
Ride bus station.
The plan was twice
stopped from being
passed onto the State
approval, as coun-
cillors believed the
original intent of the
Bickle bequest was
under threat and
needed more consid-
Continued page 15
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