Caring Staff

Our dedicated staff are here to provide support, compassion, and information to help you through your journey of grief and the celebration of your loved one’s life.

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Chris Butler, CFSP President
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Zack Wilson Director of Operations/Ceremony Specialist
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Katie Mendenhall Wilson Director of Funeral Service Operations/Ceremony Specialist
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Brandi Q. Noel Klughart Lead Licensed Funeral Director/Ceremony Specialist
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Paul Olson Licensed Funeral Director/Ceremony Specialist
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Jessica Murry Licensed Funeral Director/Ceremony Specialist
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Khrystyna Bonkovska Licensed Funeral Director
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Grant Davis Licensed Funeral Director/Ceremony Specialist Intern
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Kenzie Dowding Ceremony Specialist Assistant/Student
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Judy Woerner Certified Celebrant
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Val Butler Communications & Marketing Coordinator
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Cheryl Garvin Controller
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Rhonda McCafferty Bookkeeper
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Mary C. Bonner Telephone & Welcome Reception Specialist
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Rita McCarthy Telephone & Welcome Reception Specialist
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Christina Tebrugge Operations Administrative Specialist
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Jessica Bliss Operations Administrative Specialist
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Celeste Niemann Operations Administrative Specialist
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Sharon Rudin Special Projects Specialist
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Neal Hovasse Advance Planning Specialist/Family Service Director
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Sarah Miller Advance Planning & Continued Care Administrative Specialist
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Clada Williamson Administrative Assistant, Roselawn Memorial Park
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Mike Haldeman Director of Cemetery Operations, Roselawn Memorial Park
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Thornton Woerner Maintenance Operations Specialist
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Brian Eccleston Maintenance Specialist/CTC Specialist

Chris Butler, CFSP

President
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Email : cbutler@boardmansmith.com

Chris Butler, CFSP, was born in Springfield, IL and is a graduate of Christ the King Grade School, Griffin High School, Springfield College in Illinois, the University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign, Forest Park Mortuary Science Program in St. Louis, MO, and the National Foundation of Funeral Service School of Management. Chris is an active participant in many funeral service organizations including Selected Independent Funeral Homes, International Cemetery, Cremation, and Funeral Association, and various other educational organizations, and has served in various office capacities for several funeral service organizations.

Chris is also active in the Springfield community, and is currently a member of Christ the King Parish-where he was honored as 2014 Distinguished Alumnus, Knights of Columbus Council 4179, Knights of Columbus 4th Degree Bishop Griffin Assembly, American Business Club (past Board Member and past President), and is an Ambassador of Hope for the Hope Institute for Children and Families. Chris also served as a past Board Member for the American Cancer Society, past Chairman of the Business Drive for Springfield College in Illinois, past Division Chairman for the United Way of Central Illinois, and past Ambassador and current member of the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce. He also previously served as a member of the St. John's Hospital Advisory Council and served on the Renovation Committee for the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception and Legacy of Faith Campaign for Christ the King Church. Chris has also has been active with Downtown Springfield, Inc. and is a current member. He served on the Advisory Board of the Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln and on the advisory board for St. Patrick’s Grade School.  He is a member of the School Board at Christ the King School and Parish Council.  Chris and his wife Val are served as the 2017 United Way Campaign Co-Chairs.  An advocate for animals, Chris is also glad to be a supporter of the Animal Protective League.   In 2013, Chris and Butler Funeral Homes were honored by the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce with the Diamond Lifetime Achievement Award.  In 2017, Chris was inducted into the Sacred Heart- Griffin High School Hall of Fame.  In 2018, Chris & Val were honored by the Great Springfield Chamber of Commerce with the Business Owner of the Year Award for Outstanding Civic Involvement –which recognizes business owners who have demonstrated outstanding leadership, community stewardship and positive social and/or economic impact on the region.

Chris is the President of Butler Funeral Homes & Cremation Tribute Center, and serves as CEO. He helped form the funeral home continued care program that now includes the "Holiday Help" program, designed to assist families during the holidays and other significant days. He founded the Butler Cremation Tribute Center in 2000, and started the Pet Services Division for the Cremation Center. Most recently, Chris has expanded the Butler organization to include McCullough-Delaney & Butler Funeral Home in New Berlin (2005) and Roselawn Memorial Park (2007) and has made short and long term renovations to help preserve this beautiful and historic cemetery. In addition, the Park has added  more options for memorialization following cremation, a natural burial area, and Roselawn Pet Cemetery adjacent to the current cemetery.   In 2015, Boardman-Smith Funeral Home became an affiliate of the Butler organization and in 2018, The Funeral Home (now known as Butler Funeral Home & Cremation Tribute Center-Chatham) and Sangamon Prairie Reception Center (now known as Prairie View Reception Center)-both located in Chatham, Illinois-joined the Butler Family of Organizations.

Chris and his wife Val, who serves as the Communications and Marketing Coordinator for the organization, enjoy working in their yard, traveling, and spending time with their daughters, Camilla & Audra and their dogs Millie, and Pearl.  Pearl serves as a Certified Grief Comfort Dog for the Butler organization. They also miss dearly their dogs, Turney and Pippen, and cat, Jordan, who crossed the Rainbow Bridge. Chris is glad to be a life-long resident of the Springfield community and also enjoys the spirit that is present in each of the communities served by Butler Funeral Homes & Cremation Tribute Center, Roselawn Memorial Park, and Boardman-Smith Funeral Home.

Zack Wilson

Director of Operations/Ceremony Specialist
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Email : zawilson@boardmansmith.com

Zack Wilson was born in Danville, IL and lived all of his childhood in Chrisman, IL where he farmed with his family. He attended and graduated from Chrisman High School in 1994. Zack then attended college in Danville, IL before moving to Vincennes, IN to work for a funeral home and attend Mortuary College. He received an Associate’s Degree in Applied Science from Vincennes University. Zack worked in funeral service in Vincennes for five years before joining the staff of Butler Funeral Homes & Cremation Tribute Center in December of 1999. Zack is a Licensed Funeral Director, Certified Cremation Specialist, and Celebrant. He also serves as the Director of Operations for all of the Butler family organizations.

Zack and his wife Katie, who serves as Senior Licensed Funeral Director for the organization, live in Chatham with their daughter and two dogs. He is a member of Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus Council #364 in Springfield.

Zack has enjoyed living in Central Illinois and the people that he has had the opportunity to serve. He looks forward to serving the community for years to come.

Katie Mendenhall Wilson

Director of Funeral Service Operations/Ceremony Specialist
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email:  kwilson@boardmansmith.com

Katie Mendenhall Wilson was born in Springfield, IL, the daughter of Ken and Joy Mendenhall. She spent most of her life in the New Berlin and Pleasant Plains area. Katie is a 1999 graduate of Pleasant Plains High School and Capital Area Career Center in Health Occupations and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Sciences majoring in Mortuary Science and Funeral Service at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, IL in 2004. Katie has worked in the funeral service profession since 1999.

Katie is a member of Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in Springfield, the Sangamon County 4-H Foundation, and serves as a Director for the Sangamon County Fair Board.

Katie and her husband, Zack Wilson, live in Chatham with their daughter and two dogs. She enjoys camping, playing softball, showing cattle, reading, and spending time with her family, friends, and animals. Katie proudly joined the Butler Funeral Homes team in July of 2006 and looks forward to continuing to assist area families and growing professionally for years to come.

 

Brandi Q. Noel Klughart

Lead Licensed Funeral Director/Ceremony Specialist
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Email : bklughart@boardmansmith.com

Brandi Q. Noel Klughart was raised in Bishop Hill, IL. She attended and graduated from Galva High School in Galva, IL in 1997. Brandi then attended college in Lincoln, IL before transferring to Carl Sandburg College in Galesburg, IL to attend Mortuary College. She received an associate’s degree in Applied Science from Carl Sandburg College in 2000. Brandi previously worked in funeral service in Central Illinois and Central Missouri before joining the staff of Butler Funeral Homes & Cremation Tribute Center in January of 2011.Brandi is a Licensed Funeral Director, Certified Cremation Specialist, and Celebrant. She enjoys spending her free time with her family and friends—especially her husband, her daughter, Quinn, and her only niece, Sofia. Assisting with the homeless is a cause that is very near to her heart. Brandi received the Heart of a Hero Award from the American Red Cross in 2009 for her work with the less fortunate. She takes pride in creating meaningful, personalized ceremonies that honor and reflect each individual’s unique character.

Paul Olson

Licensed Funeral Director/Ceremony Specialist
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Information Coming Soon!

Email : polson@boardmansmith.com

Jessica Murry

Licensed Funeral Director/Ceremony Specialist
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Email : jmurry@boardmansmith.com

Information Coming Soon!

Khrystyna Bonkovska

Licensed Funeral Director
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Information coming soon!

email:  kbonkovska@boardmansmith.com

Grant Davis

Licensed Funeral Director/Ceremony Specialist Intern
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Infomation Coming Soon!

gdavis@boardmansmith.com

Kenzie Dowding

Ceremony Specialist Assistant/Student
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Information Coming Soon!

email:  kdowding@boardmansmith.com

Judy Woerner

Certified Celebrant
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Email : jwoerner@boardmansmith.com

Judy Woerner was born in Evanston, IL and raised in Westmont, IL, the daughter of Richard and Dorla Ellis. She graduated from Downers Grove South High School and then attended Blackburn College in Carlinville, IL. It was there that she would meet her husband Thornton. After graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology in 1990, she and Thornton moved to Eugene, OR where she took classes towards a Master’s Degree in Human Resource Management.

Before joining the staff at Butler as Certified Celebrant in 2011, Judy served in several positions with various not-for-profit organizations throughout Springfield and owned her own bath and body products company, which she ran out of her home.

She and her family now reside in Chatham with their son Patrick and daughters Rachel and Alison, along with dog Millie and cats Ozzie and Mabel. Judy is an active member of Chatham Presbyterian Church, where Thornton is Director of Worship Arts. She is involved in the children’s programming at church and has served as Vacation Bible School Director for many years. She loves watching baseball, especially the St. Louis Cardinals and has volunteered for many years with the Springfield Ballet Company where her daughter danced.

Val Butler

Communications & Marketing Coordinator
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Email : vbutler@boardmansmith.com

Val (Friedrich) Butler joined the staff of Butler Funeral Homes in 2005 as a Family Service Director and Advance Planning Specialist. In 2006, she was given the opportunity to begin serving as the Communications & Marketing Director.

Val was born in Springfield, IL and graduated from Southeast High School. She attended Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Communications, specializing in Public Relations. She has also attended the University of Illinois at Springfield, working towards her Master's Degree in Communications, focusing on Interpersonal and Organizational Systems.

Val has worked for several local non-profit organizations in the areas of marketing, public relations, and fundraising. She is currently a member of the Public Relations Society of America, the National Communication Association and St. John’s Lutheran Church. She also serves on the Leadership Councils at both St. John’s Hospital and the Hope Institute for Children and Families.

Val also served as a Combat Medical Specialist in the Illinois Army National Guard for nearly 8 years, providing healthcare services to both fellow soldiers and to international populations in Central and South America via military humanitarian aid efforts.

Val is married to Chris Butler and, together, they have two beautiful girls, Camilla and Audra. They are also “pet parents” to three dogs: Turney, Millie, and Pearl, who serves as a Grief Comfort Dog for the Butler organization. They also miss terribly their dog, Pippen, and cat, Jordan, who crossed the Rainbow Bridge. Val’s interests include spending time with family, writing, traveling, and volunteering.

Cheryl Garvin

Controller
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Email : cgarvin@boardmansmith.com

Cheryl Garvin was born and raised in Springfield, IL; the daughter of Jerry and Mary Garvin. Cheryl is a graduate of St. Patrick’s Grade School and Sacred Heart Academy and as a member of the Blazer volleyball squad; Cheryl returned to St. Patrick’s as a volunteer volleyball coach and assisted the SHG Club teams.

Cheryl earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Accountancy from the University of Illinois in Springfield. She joined the staff of Butler Funeral Homes in June 2011 as Controller, after working several years in the accounting and funeral industry with Federated Funeral Directors. She is a member of Cathedral Parish, the IL CPA Society and AICPA; and volunteers for the American Cancer Society where she holds the position of Accounting Chair for the Sangamon County Relay for Life.

In her spare time, Cheryl is found with her family watching her nieces and nephews participate in their chosen extra-curricular activities and traveling to South Bend, IN to watch the Fighting Irish!

Rhonda McCafferty

Bookkeeper
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email:  rmccafferty@boardmansmith.com

Information Coming Soon!

Mary C. Bonner

Telephone & Welcome Reception Specialist
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Mary C. Bonner joined the staff of the Butler Family of Organizations in 2017 as Telephone & Welcome Reception Specialist at Boardman-Smith Funeral Home.

 

Mary was born in Springfield, IL, but has lived in numerous states, as well as France,when her father was in the military. She is a graduate of Palo Duro High School, Amarillo, TX. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri, Columbia and her master’scertificate in Management of Nonprofit Organizations from the University of Illinois, Springfield in 1997. 

 

Prior to retiring from full-time work, Mary served as Funds Development Associate for United Way of Central IL, Administrative & Support Services for Big Brothers, Big Sisters of the IL Capital Region, Administrative Secretary for SIU School of Medicine, Office of External & Health Affairs, Executive Secretary for the Illinois Funeral Directors Association, and various other administrative positions during her professional career.

 

Her service to the community includes being past president of the Springfield Muni Opera, Springfield Theatre Center and Mature Mob of the Senior Center. Mary had directed, staged managed, done lighting design, helped with set design and been prop master for all of these organizations. What Mary is most proud of, however, is the time she has spent supporting her parish, St. Joseph Church in Springfield, where she has served as chair of the Social Concerns Committee, a member of the teaching team of RICA, and as a Eucharistic and Hospitality Minister. She has also volunteered at Helping Hands, Kumler Outreach and the Springfield Warming Center.

 

Mary finally settled in Springfield in 2000 and in 2007 she was joined by her sister, Barbara, following the passing of their mother in Amarillo, TX.  They now share a home together, along with Holly Halloween and Mr. Rochester, their two kitties. 

Rita McCarthy

Telephone & Welcome Reception Specialist
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Rita McCarthy was born and grew up in Springfield. She then moved to the New Berlin family farm when she got married, where she still lives. She is a graduate of Blessed Sacrament School, Sacred Heart Academy, Springfield College in Illinois, where she has her A.A. in Music Education and Illinois State University graduating with a degree in B.A. in Music and a B.S. in Liberal Arts. She also has many credit hours from U of I in Champaign, IL in Music Education and Lincoln Land Community College in Child Care Administration.

Rita had a career in Child Care as a teacher and owner, then as a teacher and director for 30 years before starting at Butler Funeral Home in 2015. She was a manager for Tupperware Home Parties for 10 years and taught elementary school music for 2 years. Rita still teaches private piano and is still the Music Director and accompanist at St. Mary’s Church in New Berlin where she is a member.

Rita’s four children are Melissa, deceased, Michael of New Berlin, IL, Melinda of Bismarck, ND, Megan of St. Charles, MO., one grandchild, Shane Scranton (wife Ashley) and 2 great grandchildren.

Her favorite activities are traveling, taking road trips around the USA and Europe with her daughter Melinda, gardening, creating and enjoying her Woodland Garden, reading, flower arranging and spending time with her children, family and friends.

Christina Tebrugge

Operations Administrative Specialist
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Email : ctebrugge@boardmansmith.com

Christina Tebrugge was born in Evansville, IN and moved to Springfield, IL after graduating from Waverly High School. She received an Associate’s degree from Lincoln Land Community College and a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois—Springfield in History. Christina joined the staff of Butler Funeral Homes in 2009 as an Operations Administration Specialist. Before coming to Butler, Christina worked as an administrative assistant for 7 years at a local engineering firm. Christina spent 16 wonderful years married to Steven Tebrugge before he passed away in January, 2008 and has a daughter, Natalie. She enjoys spending time and playing with her daughter, reading, swimming and watching movies. Christina and Natalie also share our home with three cats, Vader, Anakin and Luminara and a dog, Clara.

Jessica Bliss

Operations Administrative Specialist
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Email : jbliss@boardmansmith.com

Jessica (Boehler) Bliss was born in Springfield, IL and raised in Girard, IL. She is a 2001 graduate of Girard High School and earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing and Management from McKendree University in 2005. She then went on to earn a Master of Business Administration from McKendree University in 2007. Jessica joined the staff of Butler Funeral Homes in 2011 as an Operations Administrative Specialist. She is married to her high school sweetheart, Jeremy, has two daughters, Laken and Kynadee. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, going to the movies, shopping, and spending time with her family and all the children in her life, especially her daughters.

Celeste Niemann

Operations Administrative Specialist
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Information Coming Soon!

email:  cniemann@boardmansmith.com 

 

Sharon Rudin

Special Projects Specialist
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email:  srudin@boardmansmith.com

Sharon Rudin was born and raised in Springfield, IL. She attended Ursuline Academy and Lincoln Land Community College.   Sharon has worked in the funeral industry for 20+ years, most recently as the Special Projects Specialist with the Butler Family of Organizations.

Sharon and her husband, Carl, live in Springfield with their dog, Max. Together they have (and enjoy spending time with) their children/grandchildren: Ben, deceased (wife Rebecca) Rudin, Eli and Liam Rudin all of Chatham, Chris (wife Allison) Rudin and Aspen all of Athens, IL, Sara (husband Sean) Carroll and Emma all of Chicago, IL and Denise (husband Kevin) Klemm of Springfield.

Sharon previously served on the board of Mini O’Beirne Crisis Nursery and has been active for years in The Holiday Store, Bingo, and numerous other fund-raising events for the nursery.

Sharon and Carl enjoy traveling and marking new places off their bucket list. In her free time, when not spending time with family, Sharon enjoys making greeting cards, creating yarn art and painting.

 

Neal Hovasse

Advance Planning Specialist/Family Service Director
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email:  nhovasse@boardmansmith.com

Neal Hovasse joined the Butler Family of Organizations as an Advance Planning Specialist in March 2019.

Neal was born and raised in Jacksonville, IL. He attended college at Lincoln Land Community College and Southern Illinois University.

 Prior to joining the Butler organization Neal worked in the banking industry for sixteen years and the Illinois State Treasurer’s Office for two years.

Neal and his wife; Teresa, live in Springfield, IL.  They have two children that attend the Pleasant Plains school district.

In his spare time, his interests include barbecuing, family camping trips, and playing with his children, Jack and Gracie Mae.

 

Sarah Miller

Advance Planning & Continued Care Administrative Specialist
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Email : smiller@boardmansmith.com

 

Sarah Miller joined the Butler Family of Organizations as an Advance Planning Specialist in December 2014. She was born and raised in New Berlin, IL. After graduating from New Berlin High School, Sarah attended Robert Morris College in Springfield with a focus in business management. Sarah is a member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Springfield. Before joining the staff at Butler, Sarah was a licensed multi-line insurance producer for State Farm Insurance Company. Her interests include traveling, staying active and spending time with her family, especially her husband, and their daughters, Rowan & Vada.

Sarah transitioned to a new position in 2019 - Advance Planning and Continued Care Administrative Specialist.

Clada Williamson

Administrative Assistant, Roselawn Memorial Park
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Email : cwilliamson@roselawninfo.com

Clada Williamson was born in Charleston, IL and was raised in Chatham, IL. She is a graduate of Chatham Glenwood High School and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing with a minor in Art from Eastern Illinois University. Clada joined the staff of Roselawn Memorial Park in January of 2010. She brings forth knowledge of both the funeral and cemetery industry having previously worked for the International Order of the Golden Rule (OGR), a not-for-profit membership organization of independent, family-owned funeral homes throughout North America and overseas. Clada provides administrative support for Roselawn Memorial Park as well as caring, compassionate customer service and sales support to all families she serves. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with family and friends, working in her yard, traveling, art, attending church, and helping those less fortunate.

Mike Haldeman

Director of Cemetery Operations, Roselawn Memorial Park
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Email : mhaldeman@roselawninfo.com

Mike Haldeman was born in California and moved to St. Charles MO, where he graduated and enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1978. Mike retired from the U.S. Army and shortly thereafter began his career in the Cemetery and Funeral Home business. He has held many positions including Market General Manager, Director of Operations, and Regional Manager, and worked as a supplier for Cemetery and Funeral Home supplies across the United States and Puerto Rico. Mike found a home at Roselawn Memorial Park in 2009, where he currently serves as the Director of Cemetery Operations. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Illinois Cemetery, Cremation and Funeral Home Association. Mike has five children and four grandchildren which are his world and keep him very busy.

Thornton Woerner

Maintenance Operations Specialist
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email:  twoerner@butlerfuneralhomes.com

Information Coming Soon!

Brian Eccleston

Maintenance Specialist/CTC Specialist
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Information coming soon!

email:  beccleston@boardmansmith.com