History & Staff

We have years of experience caring for families, from all walks of life. Each family comes to us because they know we are leaders in our profession, dedicated to excellence in service, and have the highest integrity.

Our History

Our History

CELEBRATING 100 YEARS

In 1922, the Williams Furniture Company in the 600 block of East Elk Avenue in downtown Elizabethton started selling “coffins to and providing undertaking services to the public.” The name of the business was changed to Williams Furniture and Undertaking Company.  One of the employees of the William Furniture and Undertaking Company was B. P. Curtis.  Mr. Curtis left his employment at Williams in May of 1925 and started the Curtis Funeral Home with Frank Bailey serving as his funeral director.  The funeral home was located at the northwest corner of Main Street and East Elk Avenue where the “Monument” is located.  Mr. Curtis owned and operated the funeral home until 1932 when the business was sold to H. S North who moved to Elizabethton from Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, where other members of his family operated an “undertaking establishment”. Mr. North owned and operated the funeral home until September 1st of 1943 when he sold the funeral home to Don Tetrick who had moved to Elizabethton from Joplin, Missouri, where he had worked at the Thornhill-Dillon Mortuary.

A few months after Don Tetrick moved to Elizabethton his father, Glen W. “Pappy” Tetrick, moved to Elizabethton from Kansas City, Missouri, to join his son in the operation of the funeral home.

After selling the funeral home to Don Tetrick, Mr. North moved to Franklin, Tennessee, where he passed away in November of 1943.  After Mr. North’s passing the name of the funeral home was changed to Tetrick Funeral Home. 

During 1944, the first full year Tetrick Funeral Home operated, the Tetrick family served 38 families. The funeral home operated at the corner of North Main Street and East Elk Avenue until the summer of 1951 when the Tetrick family purchased the stately Grindstaff Victorian home located at 211 North Riverside Drive. The funeral home was serving more families each year and additional space was needed.  Families were not having their loved one’s body returned to the home as often and families were receiving friends at the funeral home.  So, the larger building was needed. 

In 1952, a new addition was added on the back of the funeral home; the 6400 square feet, two story structure had space on the second floor to display caskets.  A sleeping area for the staff was constructed on the first floor, as well as four garages for ambulances and hearses and a storage area for supplies.

In 1955, Don Tetrick purchased Happy Valley Memorial Park seeing a need for funeral homes to be associated with a perpetual care cemetery.  For 22 years, Tetrick Funeral Home was the only funeral home in Tennessee east of Nashville to be associated with a cemetery. Since that time, numerous funeral homes have seen the value of providing a perpetual care cemetery for the families they serve.

Glen W. “Pappy” Tetrick retired from funeral service in 1961 and passed away on December 7, 1965.

In 1963, the Riverside Funeral Chapel, formal visitation room, modern rest rooms and offices were added to the former house from which Tetrick Funeral Home operated. This structure was the first formal church-type chapel to be added by any funeral home in northeast Tennessee. More and more families wanted to have services at the funeral home as well as receiving friends where the funeral would be.  The funeral home was serving more and more families each year, so the new facilities were definitely needed.

In 1968, Richard Tetrick graduated from the Dallas Institute of Mortuary Science and joined his father, Don, in the operation of Tetrick Funeral Home. In 1974, Don and Richard built and opened the Tetrick Rhododendron Chapel in Roan Mountain, Tennessee.

As the business continue to grow, more space was needed for the Elizabethton location, so the Garden Room, a new and larger visitation room as well as a new entrance were constructed in 1979.  Additional parking for over 80 additional cars was added to the existing parking lot.

On January 1, 1980, the Hathaway Percy Funeral Home was purchased by the Tetrick family.  The Tetrick and the Hathaway and Percy families had been friends for many years. Roy Hathaway had passed away in 1976, and his partner Bob Percy had no heir apparent to succeed him. So an agreement was reached between the Percy family and the Tetrick family to succeed Bob Percy as the owner and operator of the Hathaway Percy Funeral Home.

Don Tetrick retired on January 1,1981, and sold his interest in the business to his son Richard.

Don enjoyed an active retirement and played a part in Tetrick Funeral Home up until his passing on August 26th, 2012.  Don was referred to as "Daddy Don" by family, and by those employees whose lives he touched in meaningful ways.  He was active in the First United Methodist Church, where he taught Sunday school for many years.  Also, Don was very active in the local community by participating in Jaycees at an earlier age, Kiwanis, and many community civic boards in his later years.  He is still greatly missed by his immediate family and by the Tetrick Funeral Home family and the entire Elizabethton and Johnson City communities.

In 1984, Tetrick Funeral Home was extensively renovated and expanded with the removal of the original structure that had housed the operation for many years. In 1985 the Castle Funeral Home in Bluff City, Tennessee was purchased by the Tetrick family, and the building was completely remodeled in 1986.

In 2000, the Chapel of Peace was added to the Elizabethton location, and the entire building was completely remodeled. In addition to the original Riverside Chapel and the Chapel of Peace, the building now featured two informal visitation room chapels. With the increase in the number of night time funerals, four services could be conducted in the building at the same time.  

In November of 2001, the Tetrick family opened a new location at 3001 Peoples Street in Johnson City.  The new and modern 12,000 square foot structure featured state of the art facilities which are still considered to be the best and most modern in east Tennessee.  Families can have formal and informal funeral and memorial services in this building.  Many families choose to have receptions for their family and friends in the building. The building can accommodate five families receiving friends at the same time.  The Johnson City chapel has won several awards and been featured in national funeral service magazines for its’ architectural style.

In 2011, the lobby of the Elizabethton location was renovated and enlarged.  A portico was added to the front of the building to help families load and unload from their cars in the event of inclement weather.

Over the years, Tetrick Funeral Homes have been honored by being invited into membership in Selected Independent Funeral Homes, the International Order of the Golden Rule, winning the National Funeral Director Association prestigious Pursuit of Excellence Award 14 times, and have been honored as the Best of the Best of National Funeral Director Association members. In addition, the Tetrick family members have been invited to and led numerous funeral service study groups designed to raise the level of service to families. The local communities of Carter and Washington Counties have repeatedly chosen Tetrick Funeral Homes as the Best of the Best of all funeral homes in their counties.

Tetrick Funeral Home has always taken pride in providing the best possible service and the most comfortable atmosphere for grieving families.  Through the years from its humble beginnings in 1922 in a hardware store selling coffins and undertaking services, the funeral home has progressively grown to be the most often called funeral home between Knoxville, Tennessee, Greensboro, North Carolina and Roanoke, Virginia.

In 2022, we are proud to celebrate our 100th anniversary of service to the families of northeast Tennessee.

Our Licensed Staff

  • Richard  Tetrick

    Richard Tetrick Licensed Funeral Director and Licensed Embalmer

  • Charlie  Bowman

    Charlie Bowman Licensed Funeral Director and Licensed Embalmer

  • Derek  Cornett

    Derek Cornett Licensed Funeral Director and Licensed Embalmer

  • Jason M. Bruner

    Jason M. Bruner Licensed Funeral Director and Licensed Embalmer

  • Greg Harris

    Greg Harris Licensed Funeral Director

  • Shane Younce

    Shane Younce Licensed Funeral Director and Licensed Embalmer

  • David  Blackburn

    David Blackburn Licensed Funeral Director and Licensed Embalmer

  • Heath B. Lawhon

    Heath B. Lawhon Licensed Funeral Director and Licensed Embalmer

  • Calissta Bishop

    Calissta Bishop Licensed Funeral Director and Apprentice Embalmer


  • Vickie Bryant

    Vickie Bryant Licensed Advanced Planning Specialist

  • Jennifer  Howard

    Jennifer Howard Licensed Advanced Planning Specialist

  • Brandy Hampton

    Brandy Hampton Licensed Funeral Director and Licensed Embalmer

Our Unlicensed Staff

  • Jill Strawn

    Jill Strawn Apprentice Funeral Director and Apprentice Embalmer (Non-Licensed)

  • Vera  Perkins

    Vera Perkins Apprentice Funeral Director and Apprentice Embalmer (Non-Licensed)

  • Laura Graham

    Laura Graham Community Ambassador (Non-Licensed)

  • Gary Kemp

    Gary Kemp Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • D.J.  Dugger

    D.J. Dugger Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Joe  Fortune

    Joe Fortune Funeral Assistant (Non-Licesned)

  • Jessica Baker

    Jessica Baker Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Jo Ann Greenwell

    Jo Ann Greenwell Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Summer Johnson

    Summer Johnson Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Jeff Renfro

    Jeff Renfro Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Lou Nelson

    Lou Nelson Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Andy Huerta

    Andy Huerta Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Carl  Eaton

    Carl Eaton Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • John  Barker

    John Barker Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Mike  Anglin

    Mike Anglin Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Rich  Riesz

    Rich Riesz Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Jerry  Huskins

    Jerry Huskins Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Carmen  Rogers

    Carmen Rogers Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Wayne Adcock

    Wayne Adcock Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Karen Colvard

    Karen Colvard Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Mel Colvard

    Mel Colvard Funeral Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Richie Doodle

    Richie Doodle Funeral Assistant and Grief Counselor

Office Support

  • Becky Henson Potter

    Becky Henson Potter Administrative Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Marie Bryant

    Marie Bryant Administrative Assistant (Non-Licensed)

  • Kayla  Hilton

    Kayla Hilton Administrative Assistant (Non-Licensed)