Anne Hunter Shepherd, 92, beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt, and the wife of the late Billy Van Shepherd, departed this Earth for her eternal home in Heaven on Wednesday, September 14, 2022. Born in Statham, GA, she was the daughter of the late Claude Hunter and Birdie Mae (Butler) Hunter. In addition to her husband and parents, she was preceded in death by her siblings: James Hunter, Lanoise Hunter, Clarence Hunter, Howard Hunter, Cammie Lee (Hunter) Hardigree and Charles “Sonny” Hunter.
Anne graduated from Statham High School in 1946, and the University of Georgia in 1950 with a degree in Home Economics.
Mrs. Shepherd and her husband Billy purchased Chick Piano in 1964. Following Billy’s death in 1988, Anne, with the help of her children, continued to run one of the few family-owned family businesses in the Athens area, specifically the oldest business, serving customers for 80 years in Downtown Athens.
Survivors include the pride of her life, her four children: Van Shepherd, Steve (Deborah) Shepherd, Carol Shepherd Grout and Christy Shepherd (Matthew) Rochon. The joys of her life were her grandchildren: Caleb (Taylor) Shepherd, Stephanie (JC) Baynes, Kaitlin Grout, Hunter Grout, and her two great grandchildren Wren Shepherd and Anne-Kay Baynes.
Anne was a dynamic part of the Athens community for many years. She served as President of Downtown Council many times over several decades. She also served on the Downtown Development Board of Directors. In addition, she has served the community as President of the Athens Pilot Club, volunteered for years at Athens Regional Medical Center, and participated in the Citizens Police Academy. Anne was a recipient of the Small Business Person of the Year Award, and nominated for the Athena Award. In 2013, she was awarded the Key To The City by then Mayor Nancy Denson. She was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Downtown Development Authority in January 2020. Anne was prestigiously honored by the Georgia House of Representatives with House Resolution 1143 to commend her for her commitment to improving the city of Athens.
Over the years, Anne was very active in church and community service. At West End Baptist and Central Baptist, she served as Sunday School teacher, WMU Director and VBS Director. She also coordinated social events for various children, youth, college, and single ministries in the community. As her children were growing up, she was involved at Chase Street Elementary as PTA President, and Brownie and Girl Scout Troop Leader. She served as Class Mother in schools that her children attended.
Anne’s family and friends adored her. She was a joyful presence and touched the lives of so many.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, September 26, 2022 at 11AM at Lord and Stephens West Chapel. Interment will follow at Evergreen Memorial Park. The family will receive friends from 3:00-5:00 pm on Sunday, September 25, 2022 at Lord and Stephens West funeral home.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that memorial donations be made to http://heartmusicathens.org/, which provides music education in the Athens area, and www.sparrowsnestathens.org, a Christian ministry serving those in need.
Lord and Stephens Funeral Home, WEST, Watkinsville, GA is in charge of arrangements. www.lordandstephens.com