Not sure if many of you knew Mark but he was amazing. I learnt a lot from him over the years. He was a great leader and a pleasant person to be around. He will be missed!
Here is some information about him from the Seattle ACS Group that he created.
Seattle ACS Community,
It is with great sadness, along with deep gratitude for his contributions, that I report the passing of Mark Sheppard, N7LYE, yesterday evening. As most of you know, Mark had been suffering from cardiac issues for several months now. We were fortunate enough to get a bit more time with him when he made some progress in the mid-spring, but things took a turn downward again a few weeks ago. His family was able to be at his side at the time of his passing, and he even enjoyed his beloved longtime evening ritual of a whiskey and a cigar on his last day.
We wouldn't all be together in this community if it weren't for Mark, of course, and for that we will be forever grateful, but Mark did so much more than start a ham radio communications group. By combining his talents, relationships, skills, and grit, Mark founded and then led a world-class emergency preparedness resource, staffed with experts who took cues from Mark's own operational excellence, attention to detail, and passion for the mission. I think I speak for all of us when I say that what we do together in this community, serving our neighbors and our City, will always be done with inspiration from, and a nod to, Mark Sheppard.
Mark founded Seattle ACS in 1993, drawing upon learnings from various other emergency communications organizations and structures, as well as his own extensive experience supporting wildfire lookout and suppression efforts. His vision for the ACS program from the start was to go beyond some of the constraints faced by amateur radio-rooted organizations such as ARES and RACES, which is why Seattle ACS works not only with amateur spectrum but also with public safety circuits, and why we go beyond the mic to assist with functions such as audio/visual, meal prep, and other logistical help at the EOC. Mark's vision for how a dedicated volunteer group, with expert technical and non-technical skills could support the Office of Emergency Management had everything to do with the warm welcome you have received if you have ever been at the EOC during an activation. While our group may be composed of volunteers, we have always been treaded by the OEM as professionals and peers, and a great deal of the credit for that goes to the way Mark shaped ACS.
Mark is survived by his wife Sherry, sons Alex and Nikolai, and grandson Kristopher. Please keep them in your thoughts. While they have requested privacy, if you feel moved to share a note or card, those may be sent to:
Sherry Taylor & the Sheppard Family
This evening's Seattle ACS net on 146.96 and 444.550 will be dedicated to Mark's memory and will follow a special format. Please join promptly at 7PM if able.
Tim Helming, WT1IM