Undertaking a legacy: Changing hands
By Kris Leonhardt
A little over one year after the opening of the new funeral home on Oak Avenue, John Rembs was laid to rest, leaving his wife and the Felhofers with the brand new facilities.
In 1974 DuWayne Kundinger, who had been employed by Rembs for two decades, purchased the funeral home from Joe Felhofer and renamed the business Rembs-Kundinger Funeral Home.
Three years later Kundinger acquired the Sauter Funeral Home in Stratford and renamed it the Sauter-Kundinger Funeral Home.
Kundinger added one more funeral home, which he named the Martens-Kundinger Funeral Home in Junction City, before selling his business in 1998 to his son Jay Kundinger and longtime employees John Person and Greg Jackan. Jay remained with the business for a couple of years before he made his exit as well.
“We changed the name. We dropped the Kundinger (from all locations and changed them) to Rembs (Funeral Home) in 2008,” current Rembs Funeral Home owner Tami Jackan said.
Person and the Jackans continued to make improvements to the business, adding a crematory in 2005 and later remodeling the Marshfield location.
“When we remodeled in around 2010, what they did was it was all blond woodwork, you know, that 1960-‘70s blond,” Tami said. “They (installed) crown molding, and along the alcoves they added that cherry wood, and then they just did a phenomenal job of remodeling to give it that homey, warm feeling.”
At about the same time, the Stratford funeral home located at 251 N. Third St. suffered extensive water damage.
“We remodeled after the water damage,” Tami recalled. “We stuck around $25,000 into (the building) after the water damage, and then just a year or two later we ended up (letting it go) and then remodeling the new place.”
Rembs Funeral Home purchased a building at 901 S. Weber Ave. in Stratford and remodeled it to replace the old funeral home, which was donated to the village of Stratford.
“Then in 2012 we bought out Buchanan (Funeral Home) in Pittsville,” said Tami, and the Rembs facilities now totaled four.
“Then Greg and I bought out John. John retired about a year and a half ago, and we bought him out June 1, 2016. Then our son Ted joined us in 2016, and our son-in-law Jake (Dahlke) joined us.”
Today, Rembs Funeral Home & Crematory remains family owned and operated by the Greg and Tami Jackan family. The staff at Rembs is represented entirely by the Jackans except for one employee.
“Adam Graveen is the only nonfamily member,” Tami stated.