Our knowledgeable staff are passionate about providing families guidance and support during the funeral planning process and well after the funeral. Together, we can honor your loved one’s life while beginning your grief journey.

 

 

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Tom Morris President

Tom, who serves as the owner, director, and funeral director, is the fourth generation of the Morris family to serve at Downing & Lahey. He began working at the mortuary as a child, pulling weeds for 25 cents a bag, then went on to wash the funeral home’s cars and clean the facilities. Tom earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from University of Kansas, and an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science from the College of Boca Raton. He completed his apprenticeship at Downing & Lahey and was hired full-time in 1986. Tom and his wife, Jennifer, have three children, four grandchildren, and a Welsh Pembroke Corgi named Moose. In his free time, Tom enjoys woodworking, golfing, and working to achieve his goal of running a marathon in all 50 states.

 

"Tom Morris, owner, handled it (our services) personally! Always available, called me often." ~ Charley

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Allison Morris Walden Vice President

Allison, the fifth generation of the Morris family at Downing & Lahey, started working with us part time in 2005, then joined the team full time in 2012 as our office manager. In 2019, she became the company's Vice President. Allison, originally from Wichita, earned Bachelor’s Degrees from Kansas State University in Family Studies, Human Services, and Gerontology. After working full-time for a few years, she became a licensed funeral director in 2016. Allison and her husband, Tyler, have two daughters, a son, and a dog who keep them very busy. As a member of St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, Allison enjoys volunteering in the nursery and with funeral dinners. She’s also a member of the Junior League of Wichita, Executive Women International, and sits on the Advisory Council for Bridget’s Cradles. In her free time, Allison enjoys reading, experimenting with new recipes, attempting to convince her toddlers to try those new recipes, and exercising.

 

"The entire staff were so friendly and made us feel they had a personal investment, rather than just business, in helping us through the process. Allison was especially warm and made me feel I could talk to her as a friend." ~Lori

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Michael Morris Funeral Director

Michael is the fifth generation of the Morris family to serve at Downing & Lahey and is a licensed Funeral Director & Embalmer. Michael, originally from Wichita, earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Information Systems & Technology from the University of Kansas, and an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science from Kansas City Kansas Community College. He passed the state and national boards in 2018. Michael enjoys spending time with his dog, Bear, a rescue from the Kansas Humane Society, and curating the fish tank in the east side location. In his free time, you can find him playing golf, exercising with Bear, or watching University of Kansas basketball and Kansas City Chief’s football.

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Brian Goudie Senior Funeral Director

Brian started working in funeral homes in 1980 before joining the Downing & Lahey staff as a Senior Funeral Director in 1998. He graduated from Butler County Community College with an Associate of Arts Degree and earned a Bachelor of Science in Mortuary Arts from Central State University in Edmund, OK. Brian is involved in the Rotary Club of West Wichita, where he recently served as president, and is a member of the Wichita Executive’s Association. In his free time, Brian enjoys spending time with his four adult children and one granddaughter, participating in community events, and watching sporting events, especially when the Kansas City Chiefs are playing. Brian is a member of Pathway Church in Wichita.

 

"Appreciated Downing & Lahey taking charge in executing both the services (the Rosary service and the Funeral Mass). Appreciated the director's thoughtful suggestions and recommendations. Our service director was Brian Goudie - highest accolades for how well he performed this role." ~ Richard

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Mike Bina Funeral Director

Mike has been with Downing & Lahey since 2001, after serving his apprenticeship with us. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from Emporia State University, a Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Technology from the University of Kansas Medical Center, and an Associates in Mortuary Science from Kansas City Kansas Community College. Originally from Marion, Mike and his wife, Gretchen, have three children. In his free time, Mike enjoys attending his children sporting events, exercising, spending time with family, and going to Mass at Church of the Resurrection Catholic Church.

 

"Mike Bina did a spectacular job and made it as beautiful as possible for such a devastating time." ~Bob

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Doug Chartier Funeral Director

Doug joined Downing & Lahey as a funeral director in 2015. Doug is originally from Miltonvale, KS. He graduated from Clay Center High School and earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Social Sciences from Kansas State University in Manhattan, KS. He went on to earn an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science from Kansas City Kansas Community College and then served an apprenticeship at French Mortuary in Albuquerque, NM. Doug is the former Membership Chairman of Midian Shriners, the past president of the Cartoons, and the 2019 Worshipful Master (President) of Albert Pike Lodge #303. In his free time, Doug enjoys sports, live music, and karaoke.

 

"Our family felt very comfortable with our choices and services were exactly what we asked for and above. We were treated with utmost respect, as was our mother. Top notch care and very professional. Doug was extremely caring and attentive to our needs. Even at the cemetery he allowed family to insert items into the casket and never hurried us." ~Sondra

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Jan Jacob Funeral Director

Jan serves as a Funeral Director and Embalmer at Downing & Lahey. Jan, originally from Broken Bow, NE, earned his Associate Degree in Mortuary Arts from Kansas City Kansas Community College, and served as an apprentice with Bird-Snodgrass Funeral Home in Wichita. He worked for Downing & Lahey from 1985 – 1990, then moved to Denver before rejoining the firm in 2007. He and his wife, Vicki, have a daughter and grandson, along with two dogs. Jan is a member of St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, and in his free time, Jan enjoys spending time with his family and riding motorcycles.

 

"Exemplary help and care. Mr. Jan Jacob has the patience of a saint." ~JoAnn

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Jenny Moore-Jansen Funeral Director

Jenny joined the team at Downing & Lahey as a funeral director and embalmer in 2014, after serving her apprenticeship with us. Jenny, originally from Sioux Falls, SD, earned a bachelor’s degree from Wichita State University in Criminal Justice, and an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science from Kansas City Kansas Community College.  She and her husband, Rorik, have a daughter named Kaylee and two pet turtles. In her free time, Jenny enjoys spending time with her family and working on jigsaw puzzles.

 

"Jenny - our funeral director - was the best aspect. I trusted her completely. She had done things even before we came in for our first appointment. I was astonished!" ~Ann

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Brian P. Smith Funeral Director

Brian has served as a funeral director and embalmer with our Downing & Lahey team since 1997. Brian, originally from Oakley, KS, earned an Associate Degree in Mortuary Arts from the Mortuary School at Kansas City Kansas Community College and went on to serve an apprenticeship at Maple Hill Funeral Home in Kansas City before joining our staff. Brian and his wife, Kelley, have two sons. In his free time, Brian enjoys cooking, coaching baseball, playing guitar in a local band, and spending time with his family.

 

"This funeral home went over and beyond my expectations. My husband's death was very sudden and my family and myself were treated with such kindness and professional service. Brian Smith, our director, was so helpful and able to guide us through this painful experience." ~Rita

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Ren Scherling Funeral Director

Ren is a second-generation licensed funeral director and embalmer after growing up in and around Simmons Mortuary in Smith Center, KS before moving to and graduating from high school in Goodland, KS. He played football at Bethel College in North Newton, KS before finishing his B.A. in History with an emphasis in Holocaust Studies and a Certificate in Jewish Studies from the University of Colorado in 2012. After a year of post-graduate research in Germany in 2013, he returned to funeral service in the Denver area before serving an apprenticeship in Tennessee and is a proud graduate of Jefferson State Community College in Birmingham, AL. Ren worked in the Denver metro area as a licensed funeral director and embalmer for two and a half years before starting at Downing and Lahey in July 2019.

 

"Ren was great. He provided excellent service, compassion, and was attentive to our family's wishes." ~Anonymous

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Carolyn Rowden Office Manager - West Office

Carolyn joined Downing & Lahey’s West office as the office manager in 1999. She previously worked in banking and as the bookkeeper at Bishop Carroll High School in Wichita. Carolyn, originally from Humboldt, KS, earned an Associate Degree in Business from Neosho County Community College. She and her husband, Paul, have been married for nearly 50 years and have four adult children and three grandchildren. Carolyn is member of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, and she most enjoys spending time with family.

 

"Thank you to Carolyn Rowden for her kindness and sympathetic help with questions I had concerning the billing." ~Rita

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Rachel McGuire Mortuary Science Student

Rachel joined Downing and Lahey in August 2020. She was raised in Wellington, KS, and graduated from Wellington High School in 2014. Currently, she is a Mortuary Science student studying through Arapahoe College in Denver. As she completes her school work, she is also working full-time at the mortuary to learn how a funeral home operates. After her graduation in May 2021, she plans to serve her apprenticeship at Downing and Lahey. In her free time, she can be found chasing her 2-year-old, James, or caring for her many rescued pets.

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Deb Tittsworth Receptionist

Deb, a Wichita native, has been the receptionist at Downing & Lahey since 2009. She and her husband, Dr. J. Tal Tittsworth, who is the Chaplain at Good Shepherd Hospice, have three adult children and six grandchildren. In her free time, Deb’s many hobbies include photography and reading, but most of all, she loves spending time with her grandchildren. Deb’s favorite vacation destination is the mountains of Colorado, where she enjoys hiking and watching wildlife — especially moose.

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Karen Johnson Pre-Planning Consultant

Karen Johnson is our Pre-Need Specialist. She has been serving families just like yours for over 23 years with Pre-Arranged Funeral Planning. She is committed to helping families ease their burden by planning before the time of need. She is married to Michael Johnson, who is a long-time business owner here in Wichita. She is the mother of five children and enjoys spending time with her grandchildren.

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Stewart Carnahan Funeral Assistant

Stewart Carnahan has been with Downing & Lahey Mortuaries & Crematory for 5 years. He is a dedicated member of our team who joined us after retiring from Hawker-Beechcraft after 25 years. Stewart enjoys his role as a funeral assistant and the way it allows him to help people. 

Stewart and his wife of 36 years are members of the United Methodist Church. Together they raised two children. 

Stewart enjoys car shows, classic cars, and collecting currency.

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Charley Deitchler Funeral Assistant

Charley joined the Downing & Lahey team in May of 2018 after being impressed with their professionalism and compassion for families in their time of need, something he’d witnessed first hand through his volunteer work with the funeral ministry at his church, St. Joseph Catholic Church. Charley joins Downing & Lahey after a career of inside sales for Consolidated Electrical Distributors.

 

Charley has been married to his wife, Pam, for 40 years. They share two sons and one grandson. Charley enjoys volunteering at church and attending his grandson’s ball games.

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Kevin Edmundson Funeral Assistant

Kevin Edmundson joined Downing & Lahey in February 2018 after a long career as a Vice President/Partner with a local men’s clothing store. On why he joined the Downing & Lahey team, Kevin says “I wanted to be associated with a great team that has a reputation for caring and excellence.”

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Loyd Hamrick Funeral Assistant

Loyd Hamrick was invited to join the Downing & Lahey team in January 2014. He enjoys the servant spirit of Downing & Lahey – serving people and families in the time of their sorrow and need. He enjoys being a part of a professional group serving others, just as he did during his career. Loyd served 35 years in Law Enforcement and Public Safety to both the Derby and Wichita communities – 3.5 years as a Derby Police Office, 25 years as an Airport Security Officer (police & fire), and 7 years with the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office.

 

Loyd and his wife, Sharon, belong to Asbury United Methodist Church and have been active in their church community both at the local and conference levels. They have been married for 45 years and share in raising 2 adult children and 4 grandchildren.

 

In his spare time, Loyd enjoys traveling, golfing, serving and volunteering in his church community, reading, and supporting and watching KU and Shocker basketball.

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Gary Huddle Funeral Assistant

Gary Huddle, formerly a Supply Chain Senior Buyer with Cessna Aircraft, joined Downing & Lahey in February 2014. Having heard of Downing & Lahey’s excellent reputation in the community, Gary was excited to be a part of the service and attention that make Downing & Lahey different.

 

A member of Central Community Church, Gary enjoys studying for his men’s Bible Study group, reading, and working outside. He and his wife, Bonnie, enjoy traveling, spending time with family, and watching their grandsons participate in sports.

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Jack Mitera Funeral Assistant

With Downing & Lahey since 2016, Jack Mitera joined the staff in an effort to stay active following his retirement after 40 years in the clothing industry. 

 

An excellent addition to our team, Jack belongs to Pathway-Goddard, loves gardening and outdoor work, fly fishing, and bicycling. 

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Mitch Morrow Funeral Assistant

Mitch Morrow joined Downing & Lahey Mortuaries in February 2020 after serving 8 years as a Senior Pastor at various churches. He studied 3 years Pre-Law at Washburn University before becoming a Christian and changing his life course. He went on to graduate from Manhattan Christian College and Dallas Theological Seminary. His passion in life is to help families. Here at Downing & Lahey, he can help families who are in grief and work with a group of colleagues who feel more like family and friends.

 

Mitch and his wife, Melissa, have three children – T.C., Evelyn, and Margaret. Together they attend West Evangelical Free Church. He likes to write and read, specifically military memoirs and biographies of presidents, military, and church leaders. He is also a die-hard Dallas Mavericks fan.

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Gilbert Rosales Funeral Assistant

Gilbert Rosales joined the Downing & Lahey team in 2004 because his family had always used Downing & Lahey for their funerals and he was consistently impressed by the professionalism and care shown to families. Gilbert was a mail carrier with the United States Postal Service for 35 years before joining Downing & Lahey Mortuaries.

 

He and his wife of 50 years, Debbie, are members of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church, parents to three children, and grandparents to seven. In his spare time, Gilbert enjoys yard work and catching up on Debbie’s “honey-do” list.

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Frank Runa Funeral Assistant

Frank Runa began work with Downing & Lahey as a Funeral Assistant in August 2010. A member of St. Cecilia Catholic Church (Haysville, KS), Frank joined the Downing & Lahey team after retiring from the United States Marines, York International, and Goodwill Industries of Kansas. After being active in many organizations and his church for years, Frank was interested in joining the Downing & Lahey team when the opportunity arose. The Downing & Lahey organization radiates a servant atmosphere and allows him to assist families in their time of need. He appreciates the opportunity to be a part of a team of dedicated professionals who serve the deceased and their family with dignity and honor.

 

Frank is married to his high school sweetheart of 52 years, Jan, and has 3 adult children, 9 grandchildren, 9 great-grandchildren, and a spoiled Yellow Lab named Sadie. He, Jan, and Sadie enjoy life in the country where they spend time with their family, maintain their home, work on odds and ends of too many hobbies, and live each day being the best he can be.

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Allan Sands Funeral Assistant

Allan Sands joined Downing & Lahey Mortuary in November 2013 after developing a friendship with Bob Sterbens, Funeral Assistant, and Dick Miller, previous Funeral Assistant. A longtime member of Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Allan was the owner of “Flying Colors,” a local embroidery and screen printing store. He is also a member of West Wichita Rotary.

 

Allan has two daughters and four grandchildren. He enjoys sports and traveling.

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Bob Sterbens Funeral Assistant

After 25 years, Bob retired from full-time duties with Downing & Lahey Mortuaries in September 2018. However, Bob is still very active within our organization on a part-time basis.

 

Outside of the office, Bob remains active in both the community and the funeral industry. He is a past president and serves on the board of directors of the Kiwanis Club of Wichita – Downtown, a member of the Downtown Kiwanis Foundation, a past president and board member of the Kansas Funeral Directors Association, a member of Wichita Business Promotion Club, and a Kansas Infant Death & SIDS Network board member.

 

Bob and his wife, Shirley, have two children, and two grandchildren.

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Jim Unruh Funeral Assistant

Jim came to Downing & Lahey Mortuaries in January 2017 after retiring as the Assistant Regional Lending Manager for Capital Federal Savings Bank. Jim’s wife, Shelley, worked as the Office Manager for Downing & Lahey for many years, making Jim familiar with the staff and management of Downing & Lahey before coming on board. He was interested in being affiliated with a firm that provides superior service to families.

 

Jim & Shelley have three daughters and six grandchildren. Together they attend Eastminster Presbyterian Church. They enjoy traveling when the opportunity presents itself and spending time outdoors when the Kansas weather cooperates!

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Bill Young Funeral Assistant

Bill Young joined Downing & Lahey Mortuaries in 2016 after working for over 32 years with Commerce Bank (formerly Union National Bank) and 8 years as Church Administrator for Aldersgate United Methodist Church. Bill was referred to our team by Arden Strole, a longtime Downing & Lahey staff member until his death in 2019, who said he would enjoy the job – and he was right!

 

Bill and his wife of over 50 years, Kay, attend Aldersgate United Methodist Church. They share 2 sons, 3 granddaughters, and 1 grandson. Bill enjoys reading, watching sports, playing golf, traveling, and volunteering.

Tom Morris

President
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Tom, who serves as the owner, director, and funeral director, is the fourth generation of the Morris family to serve at Downing & Lahey. He began working at the mortuary as a child, pulling weeds for 25 cents a bag, then went on to wash the funeral home’s cars and clean the facilities. Tom earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from University of Kansas, and an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science from the College of Boca Raton. He completed his apprenticeship at Downing & Lahey and was hired full-time in 1986. Tom and his wife, Jennifer, have three children, four grandchildren, and a Welsh Pembroke Corgi named Moose. In his free time, Tom enjoys woodworking, golfing, and working to achieve his goal of running a marathon in all 50 states.

 

"Tom Morris, owner, handled it (our services) personally! Always available, called me often." ~ Charley

Allison Morris Walden

Vice President
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Allison, the fifth generation of the Morris family at Downing & Lahey, started working with us part time in 2005, then joined the team full time in 2012 as our office manager. In 2019, she became the company's Vice President. Allison, originally from Wichita, earned Bachelor’s Degrees from Kansas State University in Family Studies, Human Services, and Gerontology. After working full-time for a few years, she became a licensed funeral director in 2016. Allison and her husband, Tyler, have two daughters, a son, and a dog who keep them very busy. As a member of St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, Allison enjoys volunteering in the nursery and with funeral dinners. She’s also a member of the Junior League of Wichita, Executive Women International, and sits on the Advisory Council for Bridget’s Cradles. In her free time, Allison enjoys reading, experimenting with new recipes, attempting to convince her toddlers to try those new recipes, and exercising.

 

"The entire staff were so friendly and made us feel they had a personal investment, rather than just business, in helping us through the process. Allison was especially warm and made me feel I could talk to her as a friend." ~Lori

Michael Morris

Funeral Director
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Michael is the fifth generation of the Morris family to serve at Downing & Lahey and is a licensed Funeral Director & Embalmer. Michael, originally from Wichita, earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Information Systems & Technology from the University of Kansas, and an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science from Kansas City Kansas Community College. He passed the state and national boards in 2018. Michael enjoys spending time with his dog, Bear, a rescue from the Kansas Humane Society, and curating the fish tank in the east side location. In his free time, you can find him playing golf, exercising with Bear, or watching University of Kansas basketball and Kansas City Chief’s football.

Brian Goudie

Senior Funeral Director
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Brian started working in funeral homes in 1980 before joining the Downing & Lahey staff as a Senior Funeral Director in 1998. He graduated from Butler County Community College with an Associate of Arts Degree and earned a Bachelor of Science in Mortuary Arts from Central State University in Edmund, OK. Brian is involved in the Rotary Club of West Wichita, where he recently served as president, and is a member of the Wichita Executive’s Association. In his free time, Brian enjoys spending time with his four adult children and one granddaughter, participating in community events, and watching sporting events, especially when the Kansas City Chiefs are playing. Brian is a member of Pathway Church in Wichita.

 

"Appreciated Downing & Lahey taking charge in executing both the services (the Rosary service and the Funeral Mass). Appreciated the director's thoughtful suggestions and recommendations. Our service director was Brian Goudie - highest accolades for how well he performed this role." ~ Richard

Mike Bina

Funeral Director
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Mike has been with Downing & Lahey since 2001, after serving his apprenticeship with us. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from Emporia State University, a Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Technology from the University of Kansas Medical Center, and an Associates in Mortuary Science from Kansas City Kansas Community College. Originally from Marion, Mike and his wife, Gretchen, have three children. In his free time, Mike enjoys attending his children sporting events, exercising, spending time with family, and going to Mass at Church of the Resurrection Catholic Church.

 

"Mike Bina did a spectacular job and made it as beautiful as possible for such a devastating time." ~Bob

Doug Chartier

Funeral Director
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Doug joined Downing & Lahey as a funeral director in 2015. Doug is originally from Miltonvale, KS. He graduated from Clay Center High School and earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Social Sciences from Kansas State University in Manhattan, KS. He went on to earn an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science from Kansas City Kansas Community College and then served an apprenticeship at French Mortuary in Albuquerque, NM. Doug is the former Membership Chairman of Midian Shriners, the past president of the Cartoons, and the 2019 Worshipful Master (President) of Albert Pike Lodge #303. In his free time, Doug enjoys sports, live music, and karaoke.

 

"Our family felt very comfortable with our choices and services were exactly what we asked for and above. We were treated with utmost respect, as was our mother. Top notch care and very professional. Doug was extremely caring and attentive to our needs. Even at the cemetery he allowed family to insert items into the casket and never hurried us." ~Sondra

Jan Jacob

Funeral Director
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Jan serves as a Funeral Director and Embalmer at Downing & Lahey. Jan, originally from Broken Bow, NE, earned his Associate Degree in Mortuary Arts from Kansas City Kansas Community College, and served as an apprentice with Bird-Snodgrass Funeral Home in Wichita. He worked for Downing & Lahey from 1985 – 1990, then moved to Denver before rejoining the firm in 2007. He and his wife, Vicki, have a daughter and grandson, along with two dogs. Jan is a member of St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, and in his free time, Jan enjoys spending time with his family and riding motorcycles.

 

"Exemplary help and care. Mr. Jan Jacob has the patience of a saint." ~JoAnn

Jenny Moore-Jansen

Funeral Director
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Jenny joined the team at Downing & Lahey as a funeral director and embalmer in 2014, after serving her apprenticeship with us. Jenny, originally from Sioux Falls, SD, earned a bachelor’s degree from Wichita State University in Criminal Justice, and an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science from Kansas City Kansas Community College.  She and her husband, Rorik, have a daughter named Kaylee and two pet turtles. In her free time, Jenny enjoys spending time with her family and working on jigsaw puzzles.

 

"Jenny - our funeral director - was the best aspect. I trusted her completely. She had done things even before we came in for our first appointment. I was astonished!" ~Ann

Brian P. Smith

Funeral Director
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Brian has served as a funeral director and embalmer with our Downing & Lahey team since 1997. Brian, originally from Oakley, KS, earned an Associate Degree in Mortuary Arts from the Mortuary School at Kansas City Kansas Community College and went on to serve an apprenticeship at Maple Hill Funeral Home in Kansas City before joining our staff. Brian and his wife, Kelley, have two sons. In his free time, Brian enjoys cooking, coaching baseball, playing guitar in a local band, and spending time with his family.

 

"This funeral home went over and beyond my expectations. My husband's death was very sudden and my family and myself were treated with such kindness and professional service. Brian Smith, our director, was so helpful and able to guide us through this painful experience." ~Rita

Ren Scherling

Funeral Director
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Ren is a second-generation licensed funeral director and embalmer after growing up in and around Simmons Mortuary in Smith Center, KS before moving to and graduating from high school in Goodland, KS. He played football at Bethel College in North Newton, KS before finishing his B.A. in History with an emphasis in Holocaust Studies and a Certificate in Jewish Studies from the University of Colorado in 2012. After a year of post-graduate research in Germany in 2013, he returned to funeral service in the Denver area before serving an apprenticeship in Tennessee and is a proud graduate of Jefferson State Community College in Birmingham, AL. Ren worked in the Denver metro area as a licensed funeral director and embalmer for two and a half years before starting at Downing and Lahey in July 2019.

 

"Ren was great. He provided excellent service, compassion, and was attentive to our family's wishes." ~Anonymous

Carolyn Rowden

Office Manager - West Office
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Carolyn joined Downing & Lahey’s West office as the office manager in 1999. She previously worked in banking and as the bookkeeper at Bishop Carroll High School in Wichita. Carolyn, originally from Humboldt, KS, earned an Associate Degree in Business from Neosho County Community College. She and her husband, Paul, have been married for nearly 50 years and have four adult children and three grandchildren. Carolyn is member of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, and she most enjoys spending time with family.

 

"Thank you to Carolyn Rowden for her kindness and sympathetic help with questions I had concerning the billing." ~Rita

Rachel McGuire

Mortuary Science Student
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Rachel joined Downing and Lahey in August 2020. She was raised in Wellington, KS, and graduated from Wellington High School in 2014. Currently, she is a Mortuary Science student studying through Arapahoe College in Denver. As she completes her school work, she is also working full-time at the mortuary to learn how a funeral home operates. After her graduation in May 2021, she plans to serve her apprenticeship at Downing and Lahey. In her free time, she can be found chasing her 2-year-old, James, or caring for her many rescued pets.

Deb Tittsworth

Receptionist
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Deb, a Wichita native, has been the receptionist at Downing & Lahey since 2009. She and her husband, Dr. J. Tal Tittsworth, who is the Chaplain at Good Shepherd Hospice, have three adult children and six grandchildren. In her free time, Deb’s many hobbies include photography and reading, but most of all, she loves spending time with her grandchildren. Deb’s favorite vacation destination is the mountains of Colorado, where she enjoys hiking and watching wildlife — especially moose.

Karen Johnson

Pre-Planning Consultant
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Karen Johnson is our Pre-Need Specialist. She has been serving families just like yours for over 23 years with Pre-Arranged Funeral Planning. She is committed to helping families ease their burden by planning before the time of need. She is married to Michael Johnson, who is a long-time business owner here in Wichita. She is the mother of five children and enjoys spending time with her grandchildren.

Stewart Carnahan

Funeral Assistant
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Stewart Carnahan has been with Downing & Lahey Mortuaries & Crematory for 5 years. He is a dedicated member of our team who joined us after retiring from Hawker-Beechcraft after 25 years. Stewart enjoys his role as a funeral assistant and the way it allows him to help people. 

Stewart and his wife of 36 years are members of the United Methodist Church. Together they raised two children. 

Stewart enjoys car shows, classic cars, and collecting currency.

Charley Deitchler

Funeral Assistant
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Charley joined the Downing & Lahey team in May of 2018 after being impressed with their professionalism and compassion for families in their time of need, something he’d witnessed first hand through his volunteer work with the funeral ministry at his church, St. Joseph Catholic Church. Charley joins Downing & Lahey after a career of inside sales for Consolidated Electrical Distributors.

 

Charley has been married to his wife, Pam, for 40 years. They share two sons and one grandson. Charley enjoys volunteering at church and attending his grandson’s ball games.

Kevin Edmundson

Funeral Assistant
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Kevin Edmundson joined Downing & Lahey in February 2018 after a long career as a Vice President/Partner with a local men’s clothing store. On why he joined the Downing & Lahey team, Kevin says “I wanted to be associated with a great team that has a reputation for caring and excellence.”

Loyd Hamrick

Funeral Assistant
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Loyd Hamrick was invited to join the Downing & Lahey team in January 2014. He enjoys the servant spirit of Downing & Lahey – serving people and families in the time of their sorrow and need. He enjoys being a part of a professional group serving others, just as he did during his career. Loyd served 35 years in Law Enforcement and Public Safety to both the Derby and Wichita communities – 3.5 years as a Derby Police Office, 25 years as an Airport Security Officer (police & fire), and 7 years with the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office.

 

Loyd and his wife, Sharon, belong to Asbury United Methodist Church and have been active in their church community both at the local and conference levels. They have been married for 45 years and share in raising 2 adult children and 4 grandchildren.

 

In his spare time, Loyd enjoys traveling, golfing, serving and volunteering in his church community, reading, and supporting and watching KU and Shocker basketball.

Gary Huddle

Funeral Assistant
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Gary Huddle, formerly a Supply Chain Senior Buyer with Cessna Aircraft, joined Downing & Lahey in February 2014. Having heard of Downing & Lahey’s excellent reputation in the community, Gary was excited to be a part of the service and attention that make Downing & Lahey different.

 

A member of Central Community Church, Gary enjoys studying for his men’s Bible Study group, reading, and working outside. He and his wife, Bonnie, enjoy traveling, spending time with family, and watching their grandsons participate in sports.

Jack Mitera

Funeral Assistant
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With Downing & Lahey since 2016, Jack Mitera joined the staff in an effort to stay active following his retirement after 40 years in the clothing industry. 

 

An excellent addition to our team, Jack belongs to Pathway-Goddard, loves gardening and outdoor work, fly fishing, and bicycling. 

Mitch Morrow

Funeral Assistant
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Mitch Morrow joined Downing & Lahey Mortuaries in February 2020 after serving 8 years as a Senior Pastor at various churches. He studied 3 years Pre-Law at Washburn University before becoming a Christian and changing his life course. He went on to graduate from Manhattan Christian College and Dallas Theological Seminary. His passion in life is to help families. Here at Downing & Lahey, he can help families who are in grief and work with a group of colleagues who feel more like family and friends.

 

Mitch and his wife, Melissa, have three children – T.C., Evelyn, and Margaret. Together they attend West Evangelical Free Church. He likes to write and read, specifically military memoirs and biographies of presidents, military, and church leaders. He is also a die-hard Dallas Mavericks fan.

Gilbert Rosales

Funeral Assistant
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Gilbert Rosales joined the Downing & Lahey team in 2004 because his family had always used Downing & Lahey for their funerals and he was consistently impressed by the professionalism and care shown to families. Gilbert was a mail carrier with the United States Postal Service for 35 years before joining Downing & Lahey Mortuaries.

 

He and his wife of 50 years, Debbie, are members of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church, parents to three children, and grandparents to seven. In his spare time, Gilbert enjoys yard work and catching up on Debbie’s “honey-do” list.

Frank Runa

Funeral Assistant
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Frank Runa began work with Downing & Lahey as a Funeral Assistant in August 2010. A member of St. Cecilia Catholic Church (Haysville, KS), Frank joined the Downing & Lahey team after retiring from the United States Marines, York International, and Goodwill Industries of Kansas. After being active in many organizations and his church for years, Frank was interested in joining the Downing & Lahey team when the opportunity arose. The Downing & Lahey organization radiates a servant atmosphere and allows him to assist families in their time of need. He appreciates the opportunity to be a part of a team of dedicated professionals who serve the deceased and their family with dignity and honor.

 

Frank is married to his high school sweetheart of 52 years, Jan, and has 3 adult children, 9 grandchildren, 9 great-grandchildren, and a spoiled Yellow Lab named Sadie. He, Jan, and Sadie enjoy life in the country where they spend time with their family, maintain their home, work on odds and ends of too many hobbies, and live each day being the best he can be.

Allan Sands

Funeral Assistant
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Allan Sands joined Downing & Lahey Mortuary in November 2013 after developing a friendship with Bob Sterbens, Funeral Assistant, and Dick Miller, previous Funeral Assistant. A longtime member of Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Allan was the owner of “Flying Colors,” a local embroidery and screen printing store. He is also a member of West Wichita Rotary.

 

Allan has two daughters and four grandchildren. He enjoys sports and traveling.

Bob Sterbens

Funeral Assistant
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After 25 years, Bob retired from full-time duties with Downing & Lahey Mortuaries in September 2018. However, Bob is still very active within our organization on a part-time basis.

 

Outside of the office, Bob remains active in both the community and the funeral industry. He is a past president and serves on the board of directors of the Kiwanis Club of Wichita – Downtown, a member of the Downtown Kiwanis Foundation, a past president and board member of the Kansas Funeral Directors Association, a member of Wichita Business Promotion Club, and a Kansas Infant Death & SIDS Network board member.

 

Bob and his wife, Shirley, have two children, and two grandchildren.

Jim Unruh

Funeral Assistant
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Jim came to Downing & Lahey Mortuaries in January 2017 after retiring as the Assistant Regional Lending Manager for Capital Federal Savings Bank. Jim’s wife, Shelley, worked as the Office Manager for Downing & Lahey for many years, making Jim familiar with the staff and management of Downing & Lahey before coming on board. He was interested in being affiliated with a firm that provides superior service to families.

 

Jim & Shelley have three daughters and six grandchildren. Together they attend Eastminster Presbyterian Church. They enjoy traveling when the opportunity presents itself and spending time outdoors when the Kansas weather cooperates!

Bill Young

Funeral Assistant
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Bill Young joined Downing & Lahey Mortuaries in 2016 after working for over 32 years with Commerce Bank (formerly Union National Bank) and 8 years as Church Administrator for Aldersgate United Methodist Church. Bill was referred to our team by Arden Strole, a longtime Downing & Lahey staff member until his death in 2019, who said he would enjoy the job – and he was right!

 

Bill and his wife of over 50 years, Kay, attend Aldersgate United Methodist Church. They share 2 sons, 3 granddaughters, and 1 grandson. Bill enjoys reading, watching sports, playing golf, traveling, and volunteering.