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Sheila M. Clark

Sheila Ann Messa Clark was born and raised in New Orleans, LA. She moved to Salt Lake City in 1971. As a divorced mother raising two young children, she put herself through school, earning nursing degrees from Brigham Young University and the University of Utah. She was a nurse practitioner for many years, and eventually earned an MBA from the University of Phoenix.

Sheila was a gracious Southern lady who filled her home with memorabilia of her birthplace, and her kitchen with the aroma of gumbo and etouffee. She loved her adopted hometown of Salt Lake City and spent many hours hiking the trails through its surrounding mountains.

Sheila was a loyal friend and a devoted mother. More than anything, she looked forward to playing with her grandchildren. Around the time her first grandchild was learning to walk, Sheila was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She died a year later, in 1996, at the age of 53.

In the days before her death, Sheila promised she'd always watch over her grandchildren. She would have been the kind of grandma who took them hiking and stargazing, listened to their fears and encouraged their dreams. We'd like to think that she'll watch over all the children who visit the Sheila M. Clark Planetarium and inspire them to explore the wonders of their universe.


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