Soldier Honored: Steven E. Shephard
Branch of Service: Army
Rank: Chief Warrant Officer 2
Chief Warrant Officer 2 (CW2) Steven Shephard had a life-long dream of becoming a pilot. The 30-year-old helicopter pilot’s last assignment was with the 3rd Battalion, 3rd Aviation Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina. He died on June 27, 2005 when his AH-64D Apache helicopter crashed near Taji, Iraq, possibly due to being hit by a rocket. CW2 Shephard’s wife was expecting their first child at the time of his death.
A 1993 graduate of Purcell High School in Oklahoma, CW2 Shephard played the saxophone in the school’s marching band as well as playing baseball. He was known for having a great sense of humor and was voted “Most Witty” his senior year. He earned his aviation degree from Oklahoma State University and went on to teach aviation at both the United States Air Force Academy as well as Kansas State University before joining the service in 2002.
According to his family, CW2 Shephard was committed to flying since he was a young kid. He had his pilot’s license before graduating from high school. His home town of Purcell renamed their airport in his honor. “He died doing what he loved,” said a family member.
CW2 Shephard is survived by his wife and daughter, who is a Folds of Honor Children’s Fund scholarship recipient.