History & Staff

We have years of experience caring for families, from all walks of life. Each family comes to us because they know we are leaders in our profession, dedicated to excellence in service, and have the highest integrity.

Our History

Shackelford Funeral Directors began operation in Savannah, Tennessee, in October of 1926 with the opening of a funeral home by Robert Earnest and Loura Paisley Shackelford.  The only funeral home in Hardin County, it was located in a store building in downtown Savannah, approximately one-half block east of the courthouse on the  south side of Main Street.  The following year, the Shackelford Burial Association was established.  This effort to provide a low cost means of paying for funerals benefited both the public and the funeral director and proved extremely successful.

The business in Savannah was operated by R. E. Shackelford until his death in 1936, at which time Loura became the active manager.  She remained so until 1955, only five years before her death in 1960, and oversaw the movement of the business to a partially new, partially remodeled building on the northwest corner of Main and Church Streets in 1939.  Upon her retirement in 1955, her grandson, R. P. Shackelford, Jr. became the manager of Shackelford Funeral Directors of Savannah.  It was under his guidance that a new building was built and occupied at 450 North Church Street in 1978.

Robert Paisley Shackelford, Sr., the only child of R. E. and Loura, married the former Kathryne Hall and together they moved from Savannah to Bolivar, Tennessee, opening the second Shackelford Funeral Home in 1932.  At that time, there were six other establishments in the county that furnished funeral merchandise.

The business which was located in a building on the south side of court square, moved to the east side in 1934.  They moved to their present facility on Mecklenburg Drive in 1964.  As active in the business as was her husband, Kathryne worked in the Bolivar office until her sudden death in 1961.  R. P., Sr., known to his friends as Paisley, remained active in the firm until his death in January 1977.  At that time, his younger son, Don Hall Shackelford became the manager, a position he held until his sudden death on December 31, 2000. The present manager is Don's son, Jeff.

The Shackelfords purchased Gooch Funeral Home in Selmer in August of 1945.  That purchase included the assets of the McNairy County and Citizens Burial Associations.  Several people oversaw the operation of the Selmer firm until Joe Ebb Wyatt was named manager in 1959.  The present facility was built and occupied in 1972.  Joe Ebb served as manager in Selmer until his death at which time Robert Paisley Shackelford, III, accepted the position.

During the early part of 1983, the funeral and cemetery operations of the Barnett family were purchased in Wayne County.  Included in the purchase were two cemeteries, one located near Waynesboro and the other near Collinwood, and two funeral homes, one northwest of the court square in Waynesboro and the other at the cemetery south of Collinwood on Highway 13, as well as three mutual burial associations.  Roger Balentine serves as manager of the Wayne County operations.

Johnson Funeral Home and Casey Funeral Home in Henderson, Tennessee, were added to the Shackelford organization in 1990 and 1991, respectively.  In January, 2008, the names of the businesses were changed to Shackelford Funeral Directors of Henderson – Johnson Chapel and Shackelford Funeral Directors of Henderson – Casey Chapel.  The Johnson Chapel, managed by Jeff Austin, is located on Highway 100 while the Casey Chapel, managed by Tony Hysmith, is located on Crook Avenue.  At one time, both businesses shared office space in Henderson Office Supply on Main Street in Henderson.  In 2007, the business offices were moved to the Crook Avenue location.

In 1977, The Shackelford Corporation was formed to serve as a holding company for the other businesses.  Claire Shackelford, President; Lisa Shackelford Thomas, Vice President; Jeffery H. Shackelford, Secretary; Robert P. Shackelford III, Treasurer. Also serving on the Board of Directors are:  Dorcas P. (Dea) Shackelford, Alison V. Shackelford, Kandy T. Shackelford, Jillian S. Wisely, Joe E. Thomas and R. Joseph Thomas.  Joseph and Jillian represent the fifth generation of the family to enter funeral service.  For over eighty-five years, members of the Shackelford family have dedicated themselves in service to their communities--a  tradition they hope to continue for generations to come.