Cover photo for Vance Shepard's Obituary
Vance Shepard Profile Photo
1930 Vance 2023

Vance Shepard

August 26, 1930 — April 26, 2023

Lake Junaluska

Lake Junaluska – Vance Roger Shepard, 92, went to his eternal home in heaven on Wednesday, April 26, 2023 to unite with his God and Savior Jesus Christ and family.

He was the son of the late Colombus Clyde and Minnie Lee Lanning Shepard of Macon County, North Carolina.  He was preceded in death by his wife, Betty Jo Brannon Shepard; his children; Larry Dale, Valerie Jo Fields, and Roger. Jr.  Vance moved from Macon County to Cruso, North Carolina at a young age with his father and brothers, Palmer, Dave, and Calvin.  Vance lived the rest of his life in Haywood County.

He was employed at the Champion Paper and Fibre Company from 1952 until his retirement from Champion International Corporation in 1989 after 37 1/2 years of service and was a Champion Old Timers.  He also retired as Assistant Chief of Junaluska Fire Department after 26 years of service.

Vance was a God-fearing man and a true Christian who lived that life and taught these values to his children.  He was a member of Crabtree United Methodist Church for many years.  Vance and Betty Jo enjoyed many interests and hobbies throughout their years including auctions, flea markets, and yard sales.  He was an avid wood worker, furniture refinisher, chair caner, and trout fisherman.  He was also a devoted volunteer at Haywood County Christian Ministry and Meals on Wheels.  He was devoted to God, his wife, as her caregiver in her later years, as well as his family and friends.  He will be greatly missed by many.  We know where he is today and forever.

He is survived by his son, Thomas Shepard and wife, Eva L. Shepard; three sisters-in-law; a son-in-law, Charlie Fields; three grandsons; four great-grandchildren; and nieces and nephews.

Graveside services will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 29, 2023 at Crawford/Ray Memorial Gardens.  The family will receive friends from 12:30 until 1:45 p.m. prior to the service at Wells Funeral Home of Canton.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Maple Leaf Adult Respite, 63 Elmwood Way Suite C100, Waynesville, NC  28786.

The care of Mr. Shepard has been entrusted to Wells Funeral Home of Canton and an online memorial register is available at “Obituaries” at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Vance Shepard, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, April 29, 2023

12:30 - 1:45 pm (Eastern time)

Wells Funeral Home - Canton

3715 Asheville Hwy, Canton, NC 28716

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Graveside Service

Saturday, April 29, 2023

Starts at 2:00 pm (Eastern time)

Crawford/Ray Memorial Gardens

23 US-19, Canton, NC 28716

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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