LOUDONVILLE -- Two local families, with more than 200 years of combined community service, announced on Thursday they are joining to keep a local funeral home tradition under family ownership.

Walt and Kim Lindsey of Loudonville announced their business, Lindsey Funeral Homes, has become a member of the Snyder Family of Funeral Homes.

Located north of the village square at 123 N. Market St., the full-service funeral home and cremation service center serves all of southern Ashland County, western Holmes County, and portions of Wayne, Richland, and Knox counties.

Dating to 1918, throughout the last century, the firm has served Loudonville families under the names of Jones, Swank, Peoples and Banks Funeral Home, as various owners changed the name to reflect the current proprietor.

Ted and Pat Byerly joined the business in 1972 and served the community for nearly three decades as Banks Byerly Funeral Home.

The Byerlys welcomed Walt and Kim Lindsey to the business and the village of Loudonville, when the Lindseys purchased the funeral home in 1997. Walt Lindsey had previously worked with the Byerlys in the early 1980s.

Snyder Funeral Homes dates back to 1922, when founder Ora O. Snyder opened a funeral home in the small Morrow County hamlet of Johnsville.

Four of his 13 children joined him in the family business, five of his grandsons became funeral directors, and five great-grandchildren are licensed directors working with the family concern.

Five generations of the Snyder family operate funeral homes in the neighboring communities of Mount Vernon, Bellville, Mansfield, and Fredericktown, as well as several other locations in central Ohio.

By purchasing the Lindsey Chapel in Ashland County, the Snyder Family is now serving in eight Ohio counties. Snyders also operate four crematories and a large fleet of funeral vehicles.

“The Snyder family has a strong history in funeral service, with many solid family members involved in the business” said Walt Lindsey, “It was important to us to select a successor who provides exceptional personal service. We’ve known the Snyder family for years and we know their quality, and dedication to local communities.”

Kris and Ashley Buirley, a married couple with three young daughters, who are both licensed funeral directors and embalmers, are relocating from Mount Vernon to Loudonville to be resident directors of the Loudonville funeral home.

Kris Buirley has worked with Snyder Funeral Homes in Mount Vernon and Fredericktown, and Ashley Buirley has worked with the Snyder Funeral Homes in Bellville and Mansfield.

“We are excited to move to Loudonville, to learn the community and meet the people” said Ashley Buirley. “We have been looking into Loudonville and really like what we see. We think it will be a great place for our young family.”

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Walt and Kim Lindsey will stay with the funeral home through a transition period and will remain active in the community.

Wes Snyder, a fourth-generation funeral director, vice-president of Snyder Funeral Homes, and division manager of the family’s chapels in Knox County, will also be active in the operation of the Lindsey Chapel in Loudonville.

Clients with prearranged funeral accounts will experience no change.

The Snyder Funeral Home Lindsey Chapel is a full-service funeral and cremation service center. The Snyder Family emphasizes planning for final arrangements in advance of need.

“We know how pre-arranging impacts families,” commented Wes Snyder “an intentional plan of funeral pre-arrangements lightens the load for surviving family. Their experience is one of confidence and peace. That’s why we talk about pre-planning so much.”

The funeral home office is open every weekday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and weekends as needs arise, but with 24-hour availability, the professional staff is available around the clock.