Sophie Katelnikoff Shepherd was born in Karluk in 1927. Her father was Nekita Naumoff, and her mother was Marina Nickolai Waselie, a well-known fluent speaker. She has had three husbands: Bill Wasbrikoff, Fred Katelnikoff, and Ira Shepherd. Altogether she had thirteen children, and was an active subsistence fisherwoman, annually putting up a winter’s supply of dried, smoked, and salted fish. She also had a second career as a chef and cooked for the Kodiak Hospital, Kodiak City Jail, the Larsen Bay Senior Citizens, the Larsen Bay Cannery and others. She has served as a voice for the Alutiiq Word of the Week since 2000 and has taught and shared Alutiiq since 2004, including on the Kodiak Alutiiq New Words Council. Her apprentices call her Taquka’aq ("Bear"). She now lives in Kodiak, but considers her home to be in Larsen Bay.
"Guangkuta umyaalinguartaallriakut Kal'uni kimta et'ukut. Allanek suuituq allrak. Guangkuta mikcamta."
"We thought we were alone in Karluk. Maybe there was no one anywhere else. When we were little."