John Krumm has longevity with Catholic Cemeteries that spans almost 30 years. While he has seen many changes and positive developments in cemetery services, what he values most is the ministry dimension of his job. As a family service counselor, he strives to be available to help people during these difficult times in their lives. “This truly is a job where you can make a difference,” he said. “You have the opportunity to be there when tough decisions have to be made quickly.” John is a member of St. Ann’s Parish, Prairie Village, Kansas, where he serves as a Eucharistic minister and an usher.
Mike Kuban has spent a good portion of his career working for Catholic cemeteries in Florida, Kansas and Missouri. Originally from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Mike came to Kansas City in 1978 to assist with marketing mausoleum crypts. He remained in the Midwest and with Catholic Cemeteries as a family service counselor because he enjoys helping people and values the dignity with which the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas treats people. Mike and his wife Lucy have two adult children. He is a member of St. Michael the Archangel Parish, Leawood, Kansas.
Karen Ohde joins other family service counselors in assisting people with important decisions about pre-arrangements and at the time of a death in their families. She follows the “Golden Rule” in her work—treating others the way she wants to be treated. Karen has worked at Catholic Cemeteries since 1991. Prior to that, she had worked with other cemeteries and had co-owned a small cemetery in Kansas. She has knowledge of all aspects of cemetery management. She’s a firm believer that people have a calling in their lives and that she found hers when she began working in family services for cemeteries.
Charlie Owens joined the Catholic Cemeteries staff as a family service counselor in July 2005. He had worked 30 years for Knight-Ridder newspapers, retiring from his position as a sales and marketing executive with nationwide responsibilities. Charlie also spent five years as director of marketing for the National Catholic Reporter Publishing Company. Charlie said that he likes being able to help families think, talk about and pre-arrange burial plans. “It leaves them and me with a feeling that we’ve accomplished something good and helpful,” he said. Charlie is a member of Holy Trinity Parish, Lenexa, Kansas.
Carla Yarnell has extensive customer service experience and communication skills that she focuses on helping and assisting families with their needs and concerns. She began her career with Catholic Cemeteries as the receptionist and advanced to her role as a family service counselor. Her job involves informing people of the emotional, spiritual and financial benefits of pre-need planning and encouraging them to make decisions to achieve peace of mind and to relieve burdens for their loved ones. Originally from Kansas City, Kansas, Carla is a member of St. Therese Parish, Parkville, Missouri.
Peggy Cox joined Catholic Cemeteries in fall 2014 after a long career in real estate as a new homes specialist. She has a degree in marketing from Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa. Peggy values that she has been blessed throughout her life. Through her role with Catholic Cemeteries, she believes that she can share her faith and be of service to other Catholics. Serving as a community service counselor, Peggy says, “This is a perfect fit to use my career skills and spread the word about God’s love displayed so beautifully in burial liturgies and traditions of our Catholic faith.” Peggy is a member of Sacred Heart Parish, Shawnee, Kansas.
Michael F. Crahan
Michael F. Crahan, director of sales and marketing, leads a team of highly talented and very dedicated individuals serving Catholic families of northeast Kansas. Mike returned to the Midwest in 2014 after holding a similar position with the Diocese of Phoenix where he worked for nine years. Mike has brought extensive experience and innovative ideas to his role with Catholic Cemeteries. Originally from Iowa, he earned his business degree from the University of Iowa. Mike worked for Maytag for 12 years and entered the cemetery industry in 1989. His experience includes sales, sales management and operations management of both cemetery and funeral home facilities. Mike strives to communicate why it is important as Catholics, as parents and as spouses to make pre-arrangements with Catholic cemeteries, explain options available and emphasize the peace of mind pre-arrangements offer families.
Doug Holmes, community service counselor/family service counselor, makes his home in Topeka, Kansas. Doug has a degree from Washburn University in Topeka. For 20 years, he was a chef. He was with a Knights of Columbus field agency for four years and for that same length of time served as an administrator and financial advisor for Holmes & Associates, Chtd.
Pauline Jung has extensive experience in domestic and international marketing, sales, market research, capital budgeting and data analytics. Pauline says that she has been providing information on products and services to customers for decades. Now, as a community service counselor, she shares information on the teachings of the Church, Christian burials and funeral rites to Catholic families. Pauline considers this a far more important and essential role than her previous jobs. Plus, as a daughter, she experienced firsthand the benefit of pre-planning and would like to help Catholics know how easy and painless it is to plan for future. She has found it personally, professionally and spiritually rewarding to assist Catholic families with their future planning. Pauline is a member of Cure of Ars Parish, Leawood, Kansas.
Teresa K. McGuire
Teresa K. McGuire believes that two of the most important things in life to many people are death and their money. Over the 30 years she spent in retail banking as a teller, branch manager, district manager and vice president, she met with families about their financial needs. Now, in her role as a community service counselor/family service counselor with Catholic Cemeteries, Teresa is meeting with people to discuss end-of-life plans and needs. Teresa believes every person should have a say in how he/she is laid to rest – not leaving this up to those that are left behind. She considers making these plans ahead of time a gift to loved ones and a decision couples can share. Teresa is a member of St. Lawrence Catholic Campus Center, Lawrence, Kansas.
Bill McMahon, manager, community service, has background as a financial advisor and president of a retail company. This practical experience prepared him to facilitate provision of outstanding and suitable products for those being assisted. “I love helping members of our Catholic community accomplish their plans for final rest in sacred space and with a fitting liturgy,” he explains. Bill views Catholic Cemeteries as a ministry that provides valuable and necessary information and solutions that are delivered in a caring manner and without pressure. Bill has a degree in finance from Oklahoma State University. He is a member of Nativity Parish, Leawood, Kansas, where he is active in a number of organizations including the Pastoral Council.
Chris Slater has honed his skills at helping people, problem-solving and trouble-shooting through a variety of professional and personal experiences. He has worked in claims and underwriting in the insurance agency. From 1989 to 1998, he served with the U.S. Military Police nationally and abroad. Chris has a degree from the University of Kansas, Lawrence. The member of Prince of Peace, Olathe, Kansas, is currently a candidate for Diaconal Ordination in the Archdiocese on June 3, 2017. In his role as a community service counselor, Chris takes satisfaction in the peace and relief he sees on customers’ faces after they have completed their burial plans.
Donna Tout brings her unique experiences as a church musician and sign language interpreter to her role as a community service counselor with Catholic Cemeteries. Over 30 years of service, Donna had the opportunity to take active roles in comforting those who were grieving. Interpreting led her into homes, hospitals, clinics and hospice settings where she witnessed the peace of mind that comes when individuals who are grieving know that someone cares for them. Donna is a member of Prince of Peace Parish, Olathe, Kansas. She has associate degrees in psychology and in American Sign Language interpreting.
Diane van Thullenar
Diane van Thullenar feels blessed to be in her role as an administrative assistant with Catholic Cemeteries and is thankful that she can share information about this special ministry of the Church. She is impressed by the sincerity and enthusiasm of the sales staff with whom she works and does her part to support them as they help clients. Diane has two degrees from Rockhurst University. She is a member of Holy Name Parish, Kansas City, Kansas, where she previously served as office manager and where she remains active as a lector and member of the Finance Council, among other volunteer roles. She also held the position of a budget consultant with Shawnee Mission School District.
Phyllis Schapker brings the wealth of her background as a marketing professional to and the desire to make a difference in people’s lives to her role as a community service counselor with Catholic Cemeteries. She appreciates the opportunity to interact with people to help them find solutions that are unique or tailored to their individual or family needs. Phyllis is an active member of St. Pius X Parish, Mission, Kansas. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and advertising and has done additional concentrated studies in social work. While recognizing that the idea of pre-planning a funeral or burial and facing the reality of death are the last things people want to discuss or do, Phyllis takes time to listen to family stories as she accompanies individuals through the Catholic burial planning process. She experiences renewal and the reward of knowing that she has helped a family get through the process easily and achieve peace of mind.
Bob DeHaven brings extensive customer service skills to his position as a pre-need counselor with Catholic Cemeteries from his past work in business and retail sales. Bob worked several years with the Jenkin’s Music Store in the Greater Kansas City Metropolitan Area. His love of music carries over to his church where Bob has been active as a choir director and cantor in the past. He currently is a choir member at Holy Cross Parish, Overland Park, Kansas. Busy in his roles as husband, father and proud grandfather, in his spare time, Bob enjoys woodworking, restoring antiques and fly fishing.