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Suburban Funeral Home To Reopen With June 11 Rededication Celebration
Published:
6/1/2016 3:44:45 PM


Site of Suburban Funeral Home
 
By Barney Blakeney


North Charleston’s Suburban Funeral Home June 11 officially will reopen under new management. Suburban Funeral Home, one of the oldest Black owned businesses in the Charleston area, has been a business icon in the Union Heights neighborhood since it began operating in 1954. In 2014, the Internal Revenue Service closed it. The business was sold at auction In April.

Leroy Rivers, manager of Rivers Funeral Home in Goose Creek, said last week he and several unnamed partners have bought the business and will reopen it as Suburban Funeral Home. The new owners understand and respect the role Suburban Funeral Home played in the Union Heights community and want to continue that legacy.

William A. Holmes started the business that initially carried the Holmes family name. A member of the family had been involved in the funeral home business in Charleston since as early as 1899.

Holmes Funeral Home flourished in the Union Heights community along with its Baby Boomers. More than a neighborhood business, the funeral home and the family members who owned it became a center of the community that provided various resources to residents.

It provided financial assistance for those who needed a little money, legal advice for those in trouble and served as a meeting place for community activities. Holmes family members started Union Heights’ first Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts troops. As one of the community’s biggest business establishments, the funeral home also gave residents part time and temporary employment.

Rivers, who started the Goose Creek funeral home in 1990, recognizes that Suburban Funeral Home has been an asset to the Union Heights community and considers the business a ministry whose purpose is to serve the community. The Goose Creek business actually is named The Ministry of Rivers Funeral Home. Suburban Funeral Home allows them to continue that ministry at another location.

“If we serve God first, and then our community, we will be blessed,” Rivers said. Like other funeral home businesses, Suburban will continue to provide transportation, tents and chairs to patrons in addition to funeral services. “Whatever their reason for calling on us, we’re coming,” Rivers said. “We’re courteous, dependable, and professional,” he said.
Rivers wants to encourage everyone to attend the rededication celebration June 11 beginning 2 p.m,. at the funeral home located 2336 Meeting Street Road in North Charleston. “We’re going to have a good time,” he said.
 

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