Isla May (Dezeng) Shepherd

October 31, 1944 ~ February 16, 2021 (age 76)



Isla May Shepherd



It is with deep sadness, we announce the passing of a dedicated, loving wife, mother, grandmother, and friend on February 16, 2021 at the Swan Valley Health Centre.

Isla was born on October 31, 1944 to George and Dorothy Dezeng in Nairne, Scotland. Isla grew up in the Overhill district of Portage la Prairie, where she attended Overhill School. Isla worked on the family farm until moving to Winnipeg and worked at the Grace Hospital and attended hairdressing school. From there Isla moved back to the Portage area and gained employment with Henry Farms. At around that time she met her love of her life Gordon, and married on June 10, 1968 in Rathwell, Manitoba.

Isla spent her time at home raising three children. Isla had many interests to keep her day busy including baking, hairdressing, gardening, visiting family and getting together with her friends at bingo. Isla worked for many years at Dakota Bingo Palace in the kitchen. She dedicated a lot of her time to different organizations in or around the Portage area.

Isla and Gordon resided in Portage la Prairie until 1999, then after retirement, they moved to Birch River, Manitoba to enjoy their new-found scenery. After retirement, Isla still maintained her hobbies and kept herself busy with a lot of baking for her friends. She kept her door open for all to visit anytime. Isla attended many bake sales with her daughter in law, and also shared her passion for baking with everyone that knew her. Isla loved going up to Kettle Hills to pick blueberries every year. A lot of Isla’s time was spent with her grandchildren. She looked forward to every Friday with them, as they would call it (Fry-Day) in which was the only day they would have French Fries. It was a ritual that will be dearly missed. Isla loved visiting with her family and friends as much as anything. Late night coffee gatherings were a common thing at her house with lots of laughs and stories. Going back to Portage to visit family was a common thing for Isla. She looked forward to that as often as she did.

Isla will be sadly missed by many, from her beautiful smile to her most generous and kind loving heart she gave to everyone who knew her.

Isla is survived by her two sons, Raymond of St. Johns, Newfoundland, Robert (Erin) of Birch River, Manitoba; brothers James (Elizabeth), Doug (Debbie), Roy (Myrna) and Billy Dezeng; sisters Catherine, Deborah (Darren); two grandchildren Taylor (Morgan) and Jessie (Austin); and numerous nieces and nephews.

Isla is predeceased by her husband Gordon of forty-four years, her son Leslie, her brothers Dennis Dezeng, and sister Dorothy Beaven.

Mom (Isla), we thank you for your unconditional love, your beautiful smile, and your big heart that you shared with everyone. You will be forever missed. Now you can continue your beautiful journey with Dad.

A celebration of life will be held at a later date.

If friends so desire, donations in Isla’s memory may be made to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Manitoba.


Swan Valley Funeral Services

363 Kelsey Trail, Swan River, Manitoba

204-734-5775  www.swanvalleyfuneralservices.com

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Isla May (Dezeng) Shepherd, please visit our floral store.


Private Services


Heart and Stroke Foundation of Manitoba
1379 Kenaston Boulevard, Winnipeg MB R3P 2T5

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