Industry News

Local Landmark Remains Locally Owned and Family Operated

ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. — Since the 1990s, thousands of previously family owned funeral businesses have been acquired by international acquisition companies which has lead to much higher funeral prices due to corporate overhead. For this reason it was very important to the Wheeler & Woodlief owners that the business remain family owned and operated.

Royal David, a second-generation funeral director, and his family have acquired the Wheeler & Woodlief Funeral Home from Debbie Brown (daughter of Allen Brown) and Scott Wheeler. According to Brown, “I am so pleased we were able to find an individual such as David to continue the Wheeler & Woodlief tradition of independence and family care. Rocky Mount families are very traditional and funerals are very important to them. We wanted to find someone that could appreciate the importance of quality service and keeping costs within the budget of local families.”

“One of the most important career decisions a professional funeral director can make today is whether to work in an independent, family-owned funeral home or part of a large funeral corporation. A family-owned funeral home has only one priority, to serve the community and the families that live there, without concern for stockholders, corporate staff members and excessive overhead. This is the reason I pursued a career in funeral service and why my family and I are so pleased to be part of the Rocky Mount community,” David said.

In the truest tradition of family-owned funeral homes, David and four generations of his family are buying personal residences in Rocky Mount. Joining Royal is his wife Elizabeth, six children, daughter in-law, mother and grandchildren. Kemp David is a third-generation licensed funeral director, and Dexter David is an experienced funeral pre-planning counselor, pursuing his funeral directors license.

Over the years many local families have pre-arranged and pre-paid funeral services with the Wheeler & Woodlief Funeral Home. These funds have been invested in state approved financial institutions either as insurance policies specially developed for pre-funding funeral arrangements, or in bank trust accounts. In either case, these trust funds and insurance policies will remain intact.


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