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.
When John Mitchell arrived in Mattoon in 1934, he brought with him the dream of establishing a business rooted in the ideals of quality service and customer satisfaction. Today, after nearly three quarters of a century in operation, Mitchell-Jerdan Funeral Home and Ambulance Service continues to provide local and area families with compassionate support and professional service.
Originally named Mitchell Funeral Home in 1934, the beautiful Queen Anne structure, which was built in 1899 at 1204 Wabash Avenue, served as the Mitchell's business location and home. Prior to their arrival in Mattoon, the Mitchells operated funeral homes in Newton and Gillespie Illinois. Three generations have continued the legacy at the same location. In 1982, the Coles County Regional Planning Commission voted to place the site on the Coles County Register of Significant Places. The structure was renovated in 1953. The renovation included a casket room and chapel which seats up to 250 guests. In 1984, Mitchell-Jerdan Funeral Home was awarded the Beautification Grand Award of Excellence by the Mattoon Chamber of Commerce. In the years following, the building underwent extensive exterior and interior renovations and remodeling projects.
The house was constructed for Lewis L. Lehman, a prominent banker and politician by George B. Ballard who was the grandfather of George S. Jerdan and the grest-grandfather of Gregory L. Jerdan. In 1917, Mr. Lehman sold the home to Dr. T.O. Freeman. It was the childhood home of noted author Bernadine Freeman Bailey.
In 1946, the Mitchell's only daughter, Lois, married George S. Jerdan who had served in World War II as a captain in the United States Army. John Mitchell died two years later and George S. Jerdan became involved in the operation of what became known as Mitchell-Jerdan Funeral Home and Ambulance Service.
Mr. and Mrs. Jerdan both were graduates of Mattoon High School. Mrs. Jerdan graduated from McMurray College and became a teacher, while Mr. Jerdan graduated from the University of Illinois School of Engineering as well as the College of Mortuary Science in St. Louis, Missouri. The Jerdans raised two sons:Myles, a physician in Marietta, Georgia and Gregory. After Gregory studied Mortuary Science at Southern Illinois University, graduating in 1976, he earned his bachelor's degree in Psychology from Eastern Illinois University in 1978. In 1977, Gregory joined his father in the operation of Mitchell-Jerdan Funeral Home and Ambulance Service. In 1980, Gregory married Sylvia Nunez. Sylvia, a native of Peru, South America, graduated from Mattoon High School, Eastern Illinois University, and Decatur Memorial Hospital School of Medical Technology. They are the parents of four daughters: Brooke, Courtney, Kimberly and Kendra.
Since 1985, Gregory and Sylvia Jerdan have operated the family business with a commitment to serve their community and surrounding area with dignity and respect. They plan to continue into the future as the "People you can rely on, both today and tomorrow".