Jeff Temples Managing Partner
A licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer since 1985; Jeff began his career in 1982 at Thompson Funeral Home on State Street under the direction of Earl "Tootsie" Thompson. Jeff worked for 22 years for Dunbar Funeral Home as a funeral director and embalmer before going back to Thompson Funeral Home as General Manager. He has a degree in Mortuary Science from Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service in Atlanta, GA, and is active in his professional association, as well as serving as President of the SC Board of Funeral Service with the SC Board of Labor and Licensing. He and his wife Emily Felkel live in West Columbia, and formerly attended Riverland Hills Baptist Church, they are currently members of Cayce United Methodist Church. Jeff is a Lexington County native, and graduated from Brookland-Cayce High School. His parents and siblings all live in our community. Jeff's family as been living in Lexington County since the early 1800's.
John B. Halloran Funeral Director
John is a native of Columbia. He has deep family roots with his late Father and late Grandfather serving for many years as Richland County Magistrates. John has worked over 20 years in the Columbia area as a funeral home manager, assistant manager, and funeral director. He is also a funeral service licensee in North Carolina, where he worked in the Asheville, Black Mountain and Hendersonville, NC markets for 3 years. He is also a South Carolina Certified Pre-need Life Insurance Agent. John began his funeral service career in South Carolina at Dunbar Funeral Home in 1969 and returned to funeral service in 1998 following sales careers with General Mills, Royal Doulton and the Pfaltzgraff Company.
A graduate of the old Columbia High School and Newberry College, he played college basketball for the legendary Coach Nield Gordon. He is a member of SCFDA, NFDA, former member, past president and Sgt. at Arms of the Eau Claire Rotary Club, past member of the Spring Valley Rotary Club. John is also a Paul Harris Fellow. He is a member of the Newberry College Letterman's Club and member of Washington Street United Methodist Church. John has been a professional Drummer for the Endless Summer Dance Band for over 25 years. He has been married for 42 years to Betsy Goldstine Halloran, a retired guidance counselor. He has two daughters, Mandy H. Medlock, and Lauren E. Halloran as well as 2 grandchildren. The Hallorans reside on the Avenues in West Columbia.
Lee P. Butler Office Manager
Lee was born in Germany, and at age 4 her family moved to the United States and settled in New Jersey. She was a graduate of Audubon High School. Her first job lasted over 10 years, starting out as a bank teller. She attended night school through Pierce Jr. College, earning a promotion to assistant branch manager. She moved to Maryland in 1985 and to South Carolina in 2005. Lee has held various positions in accounting and as Director of Operations for non-profit organizations for the past 20 years. She has 13 years of experience in funeral home office administration. She enjoys cooking, gardening and spending time with family and friends. She has two sons & daughters-in-law, Jim & Ashley, Dan & Jessie. Lee is a member of Main Street United Methodist Church, Columbia, SC.
Jamie Sanders Cemetery Administrator
Jamie is a native of Columbia, SC and grew up in the St. Andrews-Irmo area. Having graduated from Irmo High School and the University of South Carolina, he began a career in SC State Government. During his career in government he served in various information technology positions with USC and the Budget and Control Board. Jamie is now retired from state government and resides with his wife in Shandon. He and his wife are members of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church.
Wayne Vestal Family Services, Bush River Memorial Gardens
Wayne relocated from Virginia to Columbia, SC in 1968 to become Assistant Director of the first city-county owned Emergency Medical Service. He was appointed Director in 1970 and served in that position until 1989. He was a graduate of the first Paramedic course held in South Carolina. He served on E.M.S. Advisory Councils for the South Carolina Hospital Association and the Department of Health and Environmental Control. These councils set standards for Operation and Training of EMS Services state wide.
In 1990 he was employed by Matrx Medical of Ballentine, SC to build an in-house sales force specializing in Emergency Medical Equipment.
In 1998 he took a position with Bush River Memorial Gardens as a Pre-need Sales Associate. He transferred to Family Service in 1999, which handles Pre-needs and At-need arrangements for families in 1999. He has served as Family Service Manager, but prefers to peruse the compassionate side of assist families. He and his wife, Elizabeth “Tookie” live in the Chapin area. He has two sons and a daughter who live in the Columbia area.
Sam Caskey Cemetery Supervisor / Apprentice Funeral Director and Embalmer
With heavy hearts we announce the passing of our friend and co-worker Sam Caskey, on Saturday, November 5, 2016.
Sam was born in North Carolina and began his professional career in South Carolina after college. Sam is a graduate of Enfield Academy in Whitakers, NC and of High Point University. He is the owner of SLC Flooring Associates, providing residential and commercial floor covering here in the midlands and throughout the southeast. He is a member of Windsor United Methodist Church, The United Methodist Men, Boy Scouts of America – Leader for Troop 388, and a certified responder for the Early Disaster Response Team for the United Methodist Volunteers in Missions. Each summer, Sam enjoys attending Salkehatchie Summer Service both on St. Helena Island and in Hampton, SC. There Sam is able to share his talents with others by repairing substandard housing for those less fortunate. When Sam is not working or volunteering, you can find him beside his bbq cooker, cooking up his famous Sammy’s BBQ. Sam values family and has been married for 34 years to his wife, Susan M. Caskey. Sam and Susan enjoy spending time with their two daughters, Emily P. Caskey and Beth C. Robinson married to Marshall R. Robinson and their, and three grand dogs, Ollie Bentley and Hampton. Their long-time companion, a golden retriever Jake passed away.
Norma Jean Tays Receptionist
Norma, a native of Indiana, first moved to South Carolina in 1983 and retired from DHEC in 2005 after thirteen years as Administrative Assistant in the Environmental Services Section. She was most recently employed with Caughman-Harman Funeral Home for seven years at the Bush River location before coming to work for the new owners, Temples-Halloran Funeral & Cremation Services.
Norma is a Deacon with Westminster Presbyterian Church, and is the proud mother of three children, grandmother of five and great-grandmother to one.
David W. Blackwelder Senior Funeral Assistant
David, a South Carolina native, is a graduate of Fort Mill High School in Fort Mill, SC. He served in the Navy during the Korean Conflict. Following his discharge from the Navy he attended and graduated from King’s Business College in Charlotte, NC (accounting).
David retired from Allied Chemical Corporation/Honeywell Corporation in 1990 after thirty years of service. He also served on the Board of Commissioners with the Irmo Fire Department for twenty-four years. He worked with Caughman-Harman Funeral Home for fifteen years at Bush River location before coming to work for the new owners, Temples-Halloran Funeral & Cremation Services.
David has been a member of the Westminster Presbyterian Church for fifty-three years. He has two sons and three grandchildren.
Andy Stokes Funeral Assistant
Andy was born and raised in Columbia, SC. He graduated from Eau Claire High School and went on to attend Charleston Southern University (Baptist College) and USC Beaufort, majoring in Psychology. He later attended Southern Baptist Seminary Extension with a concentration in counseling.
Andy retired as a police sergeant after 25 years of service with the Beaufort and Columbia Police Departments. He then served 11 years as Minister of Music and Administration at a church in Columbia. Andy has been with Temples Halloran Funeral Home since August 2014.
Andy is married to Valda and they have one son, Timothy. Timothy lives in Arizona with his wife and their first child, Caden. Andy and his family attend the First Baptist Church of Irmo.
Connie White Funeral Assistant
Connie is a native of Columbia and a graduate of the old Columbia High School. She is a lifelong member of Park Street Baptist Church where she serves as a Deacon. Connie is married to Gary White and has three adult sons and one grandson. She and her husband reside in Irmo. Connie is a dance instructor with Southern Strutt Dance Company where she has taught the art of dance for ten years. Connie has been with Temples Halloran Funeral Home since late July 2014 assisting with visitations and funerals while serving her community.
John Holladay Funeral Assistant
John, his wife, Laura and their children moved into the St. Andrews –Irmo area in 1965 (50 years ago). John, the new man on the block, was elected the first President of the Seven Oaks Elementary School PTA. Lexington County did not have a building code, sub-division regulations or zoning rules. Streets in the area were unimaginably bad; there were no recreation facility in the county. In 1966 John chaired an organizational meeting whose purpose was to fix the existing community problems. A non-profit community group named the Seven Oaks Community Improvement Association came into existence. It was called the CIA. The CIA covered the triangular residential area bounded by Interstate 26, the Saluda River and Lake Murray. The first president of the CIA lived in Whitehall. John, one of the CIA’s primary voices, became its second president. The newspapers, radio and TV stations were fascinated by the nickname, CIA, and gave it an unusual amount of publicity. The CIA’s programs, including John’s lobbying, played a big role in engineering legislation that brought building codes, sub-division regulations, zoning and recreation facilities into existence. In 1969 John became a founding member of the Irmo Chapin Recreation Commission. Lexington County had never been mapped. Residential property tax was based on the amount for which a house was purchased rather than the actual value of it. Lexington County residents living north of the Saluda River and Lake Murray were paying about 60% of the county’s property tax; only about nine percent of the county’s spending was in that area. Lexington County had never been mapped. With the help of the CIA and John’s pressure legislation was passed in 1972 to create a Board of Assessment Control. Their objective was to map Lexington County and equalize property taxes. John was name chairman of the board and remained chairman until County Council took over assessment management in 1977. During this twelve years John wrote a political news column for two weekly newspapers.
John had another life before, during and after the above. During the great depression John, his mother, father and sister lived in one room in Wrightsville, Georgia. He graduated from High School in Darlington in 1940. He was a halfback on the football team, a sprinter on the track team and won several boxing trophies including a state championship while on the school’s team. He, also, worked in a grocery store and was a soda jerker in a drug store.
After high school John enrolled at Wofford College. Money was short so to help pay expenses he dug ditches, while a student, with a pick and shovel to lay sewer pipes in Spartanburg. In 1941 he left Wofford and for several months managed a boarding facility for Fort Bragg construction workers in Fayetteville, NC. After that he worked for two government agencies before entering the Army Air Corp Aviation Cade Program in 1942. In April 1944 he graduated as a fighter pilot and was certified to fly single engine airplanes.
In Italy he flew bomber escort missions as a fighter pilot. After an active military service John transferred to ground duty in the reserves. He became a reserve Infantry officer and was named Division Commandant. After thirteen years he unwisely left the reserves in 1955.
When he returned home from Italy in 1946 he enrolled in the University of South Carolina (USC) where he majored in chemistry and was on the Boxing team. He was one of the organizers of a political group called “The McBride Brotherhood”. John was its first president.
After USC John won 21 professional boxing matches and worked for three finance companies. In 1958 he married Laura Johnstone and lived in Birmingham, Alabama. He was territory manager for a national finance company and was responsible for three offices in Alabama, Mississippi and Northwest Florida. In 1960 they moved to Greensboro, NC where he had five offices.
In 1961 his family moved to Columbia and became members of Washington Street United Methodist Church. John has served on most of the churches boards including being Chairman of the Administrative Board in 1969. He is Chairman of the Good Samaritan Committee and a member of the Finance Committee and the Worship Committee.
In 1963 John became Assistant Division Manager of the Consumer Credit Division of South Carolina National Bank (SCN) and was the bank’s licensed insurance agent. During his 30 years at SCN he served in many departments of the bank including being Director of the Consumer Credit Division. The last eleven years at SCN he was vice president in the Chairman’s Division with the title of Administrator of Legislation Affairs. His responsibilities included lobbying in both South Carolina and Washington. He had many political buddies whom most people only see on television.
Before he retired from SCN he was a member of many state and national banking committees and chairman of some. He was, also, on the boards of four national companies.
Some other things happened during his 30 years at the bank. In 1984, to make professional boxing safer, he helped write and lobbied for a bill that created the State Boxing Commission. The commission began regulating other athletics and its name was changed to the State Athletic Commission in 1985. Governor Richard Riley appointed John to the first commission. Governor Carroll Campbell reappointed him twice. He was the commission’s first chairman and remained chairman for the twelve years he was on the commission.
John co-published a book in 2002 and was sole publisher of three books in 2015. He was selected for parts in three movies in 1997, 2006 and 2008. Glenforest School elected him to its first board in 1993. County Council appointed him as their representative to the Lexington County Development Corporation in 1996. John has worked part-time as a funeral assistant for nine years and is employed by Temples Halloran Funeral and Cremation Services.
Phyllis Mitchell Plyler Receptionist and Funeral Assistant
Phyllis Mitchell Plyler, a native of Saluda, graduated from Saluda High School, then Anderson and Columbia Colleges, with a degree in Sociology and Social work. She was employed by the SC Department of Mental Health, SC Senate, Mil El Tupperware Sales and Family Shelter as a social worker, Sales Manager and Volunteer Administrator until 2001. At that time, she continued her passion of cooking, helping people, event planning, catering and running the Cotton House Banquet and Rental Hall, that she and her husband, Glenn built and opened in July 1997.
They currently live in Irmo area. They have been members of Union United Methodist Church since 1982 where Phyllis serves on numerous boards, committees and has held various offices. Currently, she is on the Evangelism team, greeter for both services, and caterer for family dinners, meals and President of the United Methodist Women. Phyllis is a member of Midlands Blue Star Mothers, St. andrews Womens Club, The Red Hat Scoceity and Woodman of the World. Through the years she has received numerous awards for Volunteer work with SC Department of Juvenile Justice, Department of Corrections, Woodmen of the World, and Employee of the year at Crafts Farrow State Hospital.
She and Glenn have 2 grown children, daughter, Lyndsey who works with Agape Senior and is in law school; son, Jonathan is a Captain in the US Air Force. They are the proud “grandparents” of 4 precious dogs, Duke, Duchess, Dixie and Beau. Phyllis has been employed with Temples Halloran Funeral Home since August, 2014.
Schultz Sanders Cemetery Assistant
Schultz was born July 25, 2015, in Effingham, SC. He is a CKC registered Standard Poodle and is the funeral home mascot and therapy dog. When Schultz is not working hard in the cemetery office, he can be found searching the cemetery for interesting smells.