Obituaries

Burley Matthews
B: 1930-08-04
D: 2017-04-03
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Matthews, Burley
Hattie MacDonald
B: 1932-03-08
D: 2017-04-25
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MacDonald, Hattie
Weldon Simmons
B: 1920-09-13
D: 2017-04-23
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Simmons, Weldon
Edward O'Ferrall Pauly
B: 1935-04-17
D: 2017-04-22
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Pauly, Edward O'Ferrall
Lydia Tarpley
B: 1928-11-17
D: 2017-04-21
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Tarpley, Lydia
Nelda Faye Honea
B: 1934-08-27
D: 2017-04-21
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Honea, Nelda Faye
Gene Dennis
B: 1927-09-25
D: 2017-04-19
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Dennis, Gene
Cindy Eldridge
B: 1956-09-04
D: 2017-04-17
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Eldridge, Cindy
Charles Keeton Ewing
B: 1935-10-27
D: 2017-04-20
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Ewing, Charles Keeton
Geraldine "Jerry" Moore
B: 1925-12-31
D: 2017-04-19
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Moore, Geraldine "Jerry"
Kathy Patricia Mullen
B: 1960-07-09
D: 2017-04-10
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Mullen, Kathy Patricia
Bridget "Brigid" Hendricks
B: 1934-01-31
D: 2017-04-07
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Hendricks, Bridget "Brigid"
Debra Owen
B: 1951-10-03
D: 2017-04-09
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Owen, Debra
Clifford Neal Coleman
B: 1921-10-06
D: 2017-04-06
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Coleman, Clifford Neal
John Paul Livingston
B: 1932-10-12
D: 2017-04-06
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Livingston, John Paul
Bobby Joe Steadman
B: 1937-04-03
D: 2017-04-05
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Steadman, Bobby Joe
Ellen Marie Madsen
B: 1948-01-10
D: 2017-03-24
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Madsen, Ellen Marie
Gary Adams
B: 1954-08-01
D: 2017-03-24
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Adams, Gary
Linda Sue Thomas
B: 1947-08-29
D: 2017-04-04
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Thomas, Linda Sue
Ola Heffley
B: 1933-03-07
D: 2017-04-02
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Heffley, Ola
Kathryn Byars
B: 1923-08-21
D: 2017-04-03
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Byars, Kathryn

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512 North Ridgeway Dr.
CLEBURNE, TX 76033
Phone: 817-648-0522
Fax: 817-556-0070

Our Story

 

1866

It is recorded by a local historian that in 1866, the first "Undertaking Parlor" was established in Camp Henderson by Vincent Gray (1832-1897). Gray founded a small hardware and undertaking company, and also served as postmaster until the town of Cleburne was officially organized. It was a plank storefront building. He was appointed one of the trustees on the school board in 1883.

In 1868, he relocated the business to 114 East Chambers, at the corner of Chambers and Anglin streets. It was the first block east from the courthouse square. The original building still exists today as part of Cleburne's historical district downtown area.

Gray had many challenges and interesting facts in taking care of the dead during these early times. Being also in the hardware business, he actually made the caskets. The lumber used in making these caskets of that time was cut by one-horse mills from the timbers of Texas. Bodies were often caried to their final resting places in ox carts, and many oxen-drawn vehicles were seen in early Johnson County funeral processions.

1867
Camp Henderson was selected to be the county seat of Johnson County. These men who fought in the war between the states insisted the town be named in memory of their fallen leader even though he never touched Texas soil.

1871
Cleburne became incorporated as a city on May 3, 1871.

Another important part of Cleburne's history is the Chisholm Trail. The trail wound through Johnson County and across what is now the western edge of Cleburne during the early 1870's.

1880
By 1880, the population of Cleburne tripled.

1881
One of the most important events for Cleburne happened in December of 1881. At that time a railroad spur was completed from Cleburne to Fort Worth. In 1897, the Santa Fe Railroad built its shops in Cleburne and resulted in employment for five hundred residents. The railroad has long been considered the industry that built Cleburne, Texas.

1897
August 2, Cleburne's first undertaker, Vincent Gray dies at age 64. He was buried in Cleburne Memorial Cemetery.

1884      
Tobe N. Blackwell (1858-1909) started as a clerk at Gray & Blair Furniture, Hardware & Undertaking.

He eventually bought an interest in the business, and later was sole owner.

He later sold an interest to the undertaking manager, R.H. Deering in 1894.

The funeral home was listed in the city directory as Deering and Blackwell, Undertakers" at 114 E. Chambers Street in 1899.

1903
In March, Texas passed a bill creating the State Board of Embalming. This licensing system marked the next step in the professional status of the funral profession. Mr. R.H. Deering held Texas Embalmer license no 32.

1905
The business was sold to Gray's son-in-law R.H. Deering, who was serving as manager of the growing undertaking parlor. At this time it was renamed R.H. Deering, Undertakers.

R.H. Deering (1866-1939) was born in Meridan, Mississippi, and came to Texas as a young man. He arrived in Cleburne in 1886. He was first a civil engineer, then mechanic, fireman, and finally an undertaker. He bought an interest in the business in 1894. He married Effie Gray (1874-1956) who was the daughter of Vincent Gray, the first undertaker.

1917-1919
Flu epidemic kept the undertakers busy.

1922
Deering's son, J. Vincent Deering(1902-1993) joined the business and it became known as R.H. Deering and Son.

1938
The Deerings purchased the old Crank Boarding House property, tore it down, and built an appropriate "Funeral Parlor" where the structure stands as of 2004. There was a long chapel on the left side back of the building that could seat around 100 people in folding chairs that were set up in it and adjoining rooms, with a small family room on the left side of the chapel.

1939
October 16, R. H. Deering dies at age 74. He is buried in Cleburne Memorial Cemetery. The Cleburne Memorial cemetery was the third cemetery in Cleburne and was developed due to the first cemetery being full and second having solid limestone formations under the surface.

In December, F. Byron Crosier of Godley and J. Hunter Pearson of Burleson became partners, purchasing the firm from the Deering family, and renaming it Crosier-Pearson Funeral Home. Crosier was the businessman, and Pearson was the up front man. Crosier's family had settled in Godley in the early 1900s and his father estabished a hardware store there.

Both had worked in their family's perspective hardware stores which had undertaking departments. They helped each other out when things got busy so they had gotten to know each other, and decided to go in together to buy out the Deering family after Mr. Deering died.

F. Byron Crosier

J. Hunter Pearson

1957

With the business growing, Mr. Crosier and Mr. Pearson built a formal funeral chapel on the south side of the building offering a drastic change to the funeral industry in Cleburne. Up to that time most funerals were in churches, homes or at graveside. It seats 275 people.

Jimmy Wray joined the firm as a high school part time helper, washing cars and assisting with funerals. He began making ambulance calls, and developed an interest in funeral service. He went to Dallas Institute of Mortuary Service, graduating in 1962. He returned to Croser- Pearson, and remained there 28 years before joining the staff of Martin's Funeral Home.


Chapel being added next to original building.

1966
A Milestone! 100 years in business in Johnson County, Texas.

1975
Johnson County resident, R. B. "Bob" Mayfield and J. Hunter Pearson bought the Crosier interest in the firm.

1987   
The funeral home name is formally changed to Crosier-Pearson-Mayfield Funeral Home. More renovations to the front of the building by adding additional offices, foyer and porch area.

1989
May 8, F. Byron Crosier dies at age 87 in Vernon, Texas. Buried in Rosehill Cemetery, Cleburne.

1993
November 15, J. Vincent Gray dies at age 91. He was buried in Cleburne Memorial Cemetery.

1996
February 15, J. Hunter Pearson dies at age 87. Buried in Rose Hill Cemetery.

1999
Actual calculations show Crosier-Pearson-Mayfield to have served more than 18,000 families from time of establishment to present.

2001
Another Milestone! 135 years in business.

2004
September 28, 2004 - Crosier-Pearson merged with Cleburne Funeral Home with longtime Cleburne resident Jimmy Wray and his wife Carol as funeral directors in charge.

2006

The Crosier-Pearson Cleburne Funeral Home at 512 N. Ridgeway has been enlarged and remodeled to provide more comfortable and spacious facilities for visitation and funeral services. The parking lot has been enlarged as well.

All business and services from our Main Street location have been moved to 512 N. Ridgeway.

All information from past funerals at our Main Street location as well as all pre-need policies and records have been taken to our beautiful new location.

2013

Jimmy and Carol Wray become part owners of the current Crosier-Pearson Cleburne Funeral Home.