Kelley N. Shepard, 63, Carthage

CARTHAGE, NY —  Kelley Norman Shepard, 63, Carthage, NY, passed away at home on Nov. 29, 2022, due to natural causes.

Born to Nancy and Robert Shepard in Syracuse, NY, Kelley was one of seven siblings.

He stood out for his feisty personality and quick wit. His childhood was filled with family ski trips, hours spent shooting hoops in the yard, and near daily visits with his beloved grandmother Dorothy. He spent his teen years working at his family’s hardware store and seeking out new music, which became a lifelong passion.

Kelley spent 35 years working in video production and broadcasting and was proudly involved with labor unions throughout his career. His retirement in 2021 allowed him more time to enjoy his home on the Black River, where he loved tending to his well-manicured garden or sitting by the river with a friend, a newspaper or a good book.

Kelley considered fatherhood to be his greatest accomplishment in life. He always had time for his kids, whether that meant taking them to a Syracuse game at the Dome, working in the garden, or doing art projects at home. He delighted in his children’s creativity and nurtured their curiosities with patience and sincere interest. In recent years, his joy was only magnified with the arrival of his first grandchild, Jack Kelley Martin.

Over the years Kelley lived in Vermont, Philadelphia, Syracuse, the D.C. area, and the north country, where he collected many friends. Those who knew him reveled in his eclectic tastes and wicked sense of humor. He was generous with his time and fiercely loyal. His one-of-a-kind personality earned him a long list of affectionate nicknames: Kell, Shep, the Golden Boy, Stormin’ Norman, but most of all… he was ShepDog. Kelley was a true original in a world of copies, a bright orange spot of color in a world of gray. He will be missed terribly by those who loved him.

Kelley is survived by his daughters, Kathryn (Robert) Martin and Emily (Daniel) Discenza; a son, Kelley Shepard; a grandson, Jack Martin; three brothers, Robert Shepard, Brad Shepard, and Michael Shepard; a sister, Amy Sullivan; and many loving cousins.

He was preceded in death by a brother, James Shepard, a sister, Cynthia Shepard, and his parents.

A celebration of life will take place 3 to 6 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022, at Garland City Beer Works, 321 Howk St., Watertown. Guests are encouraged to wear orange.

In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, Natural Heritage Trust at

Arrangements have been entrusted to Cleveland Funeral Home, Inc., Watertown.

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