My Personal Page
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  ms_stix's profile

  about me
    Many people have asked me to tell about myself, so I decided to create this page in order to do that.

My full name is Maridean Mansfield Shepard, but most people call me Mari. I am currently disabled, working when I can, as a computer consultant, artist, musician, character actress, and independent Avon representative.

Prior to health problems, I worked as a teacher (special ed. and music), secretary, bookkeeper, entertainer (dancer, drummer, singer, and actress), computer operator/tech support, and online sysop.

I have been a Braille transcriber since age 11. I founded the disABILITIES Information Services on AOL (back in 1986, when it was Quantum Link), and on GEnie, and was co-creator (with Phill Seaman) of the disABILITIES Database service, for which we earned an award from Johns Hopkins. I was also inducted into WHO'S WHO.

In the past I have also enjoyed activities such as camping, dirt biking, motocross, jet skis, dancing (ballroom, popular, western, and belly dance), needlework, softball, and swimming.

I am a survivor of auto accidents, molestation, rape, the Northridge quake, frequent hospitalizations, surgeries, and a variety of tumors. From 1992-1997 I lost my mother-in-law (cancer), grandma (heart), dad (heart), husband (suicide), mom (heart and cancer), and brother (heart and cancer).

My current disabilities include: asthma, hypothyroid, heart disease, arthritis, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), fibromyalgia (FMS), Myofascial Pain Syndrome (MPS), and Chronic Fatigue / Immune Dysfunction Syndrome (CFIDS).

SCHOOLS ATTENDED: E.O.Green Jr. High, Hueneme High School, Buena H.S., Ventura College, L.A. Mission College, Learning Tree University.

PLACES I'VE WORKED: Hueneme School District, Burbank School District, Pinecrest Schools, Foundation for the Junior Blind, Van Nuys College of Business, Pacific Coast Technical Institute, International Guiding Eyes, Manpower, Kelly Services, Avon, and Engelhard.

BANDS I'VE BEEN IN: Holland Trio, Steve Randall Organization (SRO), The 5th Amendment, The Marshalls, backup band for Molly Bee, Fresh Aire (afterhours drummer), Cottonwood, Yosemite.

CLIENTS FOR COMPUTER, MUSIC, OR ART WORK: Hydrel, Engelhard, Van Nuys College of Business, Pacific Coast Technical Institute, 391st Bomber Squadron, Marble Unlimited, Chevon, Van Nuys Theatre, Cintas Uniforms, Cable Radio Network, Scavone Wallcovering, Jack-in-the-Box, ALS Assn., Interactive Entrtinment, and various bases of the US Navy.

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I was born in Enid, OK, on January 20, 1952. My dad was Howard Ernest Mansfield and my mom was Nadine Miller Mansfield. I grew up in San Diego and Ventura, California, with my older brother (Don) and sister (Dianne) and younger sister (Judy).

I moved to the San Fernando Valley and on June 25, 1977 was married to Kent Lee Shepard, a deaf man who raced (drags and motocross) and was a true craftsman at paperhanging and construction.

I became a widow in 1995. I have no children, but I have 2 cockatiels (Bigbird and Grady) and a budgie (Blue Angel). I used to have large dogs, but when I lost my home, in 1999, I had to find a new home for my beautiful Rottie, Mariah.

I am active in my church family at Shepherd's Community Church, where I am busy playing drums on the worship team, director of the AWANA Cubbies, paint murals, and serve on childcare, drama, and convalescent hospital ministries. It was thanks to members of my church family that I have a new home and a van to get me around.


This area will be expanded soon, but for now, I just wanted to list some of the special people who have touched my life: Louise Foote, Patsy Williams, Bob and Gloria Spittle, Dennis Kent, Wanda Hale, Estella Dallons, Raimer Rojas, Derek Morris, Isabel Blanco, Barry Rabe, Pastors Paul Brown, Mark Melillo, and Mark Schweitzer and their wives, John and Jody Faas, Darcy Reiff, Sean and Jessica Ransom and their boys, Kian and Christian, Dave and Cathy Morrison, and my entire "family" at Shepherd's Community Church in Canoga Park.

I must also include my sister, Jude, who was here to help me care for our mom before she died and to help me through the other deaths in our family. She is a talented computer tech., craftperson, and exotic animal rehabilitator, and the very best friend and sister anyone could ever want.

And, while I am giving thanks, I must of course thank God, who gave me a new home and new life, and is always there, to guide my path and see me through all things.


I play drums in my church praise band. I also enjoy reading, singing, drawing, painting, writing songs and poetry, working with computers, animals, people of all ages, and using Braille and sign language.



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