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Rachel Ann Shepherd died Sat., May 25, 1996, surrounded by her loving family.

Rachel came into our lives on a sunny June day, June 13, 1980. She came in sunshine and blessed our lives with her beautiful smile for 15 short years. Her loving parents, Scott James Shepherd and Virginia Cottrell Shepherd, and her big brother, J.P., were so delighted to have this special baby join their family. She brought love and happiness to everyone who knew her, and everyone who met her was blessed by her love and her smile.But Rachel had a challenge, a brain tumor which she battled for eight years, but she never lost her intelligence, her love, or her smile. In the short 15 years Rachel was with us, she accomplished many things: she danced from the time she was two, sang with Kids Are Music for four years, was an accomplished gymnast, excelled in school (even winning the state spelling bee at 8, after her first surgery), was the All-Star pitcher on her softball team, was a cheerleader at North Layton Junior High, Centennial Knight queen of her sophomore dance and a high honor roll student at Northridge High School.

Rachel loved to travel, shop, watch the Jazz, and be with her friends. The gospel of Jesus Christ was extremely important to Rachel, and she currently was serving as MIA Maid first counselor in the Oakridge Ward and was honorary four-year graduate of Northridge Seminary. On April 26, 1996 Rachel and her family were sealed for time and all eternity in the Bountiful Temple, something that brought great happiness and peace to Rachel.

Rachel's smile brought happiness to everyone who met her; she touched the lives of family, neighbors, friends, and the caregivers who helped Rachel battle her brain tumor at Primary Children's Medical Center. A special bond of love and caring exists between Rachel and her brother J.P., who gave her devoted service right up to the end of Rachel's life here on earth. They were more than brother and sister; they were best friends. She was the light and joy of her parents' lives. Rachel's special gift to the world was the gift of friendship; she was a best friend to so many who will always love and remember her.

Rachel's family wishes a special thanks to Dr. Carol Bruggers, Dr. Fan Tait, Dr. Alan Gartrell, Dr. John Thomson, and Ken Hicken of Primary Children's Hospital, who took special care of Rachel right up to the end; Francelle Roush of Community Nursing Services, who allowed Rachel to be home until her death; McKay-Dee Hospital business office, who made it possible for Virginia to be home to care for Rachel; the employees of Andy's Chuck Wagon, who made it possible for Scott to be home to care for Rachel; to the Make-A-Wish Foundation; and to all of Rachel's friends who came by every day to see how she was doing and to laugh and eat Jelly Bellies with her.

Rachel is survived by her parents, Scott and Virginia Shepherd; her brother, J.P.; her grandparents, Bill and Julie Cottrell and Bud and Joan Shepherd; and many aunts, uncles, and cousins.

A viewing will be held Tues., May 28, 1996, 6-9 p.m. at the Oakridge Ward, 2025 East 2000 North, Layton, Utah. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Weds., May 29, 1996, Oakridge Ward, with a viewing from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Interment will be at Lindquist Memorial Park of Layton.

In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to Primary Children's Medical Center oncology department or Community Nursing Services Foundation, 2970 South Main #300, Salt Lake City, Utah 84115. Funeral Directors: Lindquist Layton Mortuary.

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