Our Caring Staff

Trusted experts creating custom goodbyes reflecting love and life.

It is our outstanding people who deliver our exceptional service. We know that each death is difficult, and each is unique. We believe special relationships are to be honored. We know how to take care of all the details well. We all know how to listen.

We offer funeral, cremation and burial services. We provide grief and bereavement counseling. We are available all day and night, every day.

Our dedication and diligence enable us to continue the over 100 year old tradition of serving each and every family with the utmost quality and care.




Administrative Staff



Funeral Service Associates



Maintenance and Housekeeping


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Terence B. Desmond, CFSP Licensed Funeral Director and President

"I have spent my life in funeral service because I know that I can make a difference in people's lives at their most difficult hour."

 

For over 50 years, Terry Desmond has served families as a funeral director. He graduated from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School, the University of Notre Dame and the Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science. As part of his on-going continuing education, Terry is recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP). He is a member of the Advisory Board at the Wayne State University Department of Mortuary Science and a past State Director of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association.

 

Terry has always been very active in the community. He is a past Chairman of the Board of Angels' Place (Christian homes for developmentally disabled adults), a former board member of the the University of Detroit Jesuit High School and a former member of the Oakland County Senior Planning Coalition. Other community leadership has included co-founder and former board member of Troy Boys/Girls Club, co-founder of Troy Medi-Go, past vice-president of the Troy Chamber of Commerce, past president of the Kiwanis Club of Troy, past president of the Notre Dame Club of Detroit, former member of the Board of Directors of Marian High School, and past president of the Brother Rice and Marian High School Dads Clubs. Terry is also a past Parish Council president at St. Thomas More and is now an active member of St. Hugo of the Hills, where he and his wife Betty were co-presidents of the St. Hugo Parent Teacher Guild.

 

His community involvement has been recognized by many organizations including the Distinguished Citizen Award for City of Troy in 1982, the Italian Study Group's 2000 Italian-American of the Year, and the Marian High School Volunteer of the Year Award in 2003. Each school he attended has recognized his achievements, including the Award of the Year from the Notre Dame Club of Detroit in 1980, the Alumnus of the Year Award from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School in 2006 and most recently the 2015 Alumnus of the Year Award from the Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science. Terry and Betty have also received a special recognition for their continuing service to Marian High School and were honored by Guest House with the 2015 Bishop Kevin M. Britt Award in recognition of a significant ministry to the Catholic Church.

 

Raised in St. Benedict Parish (Highland Park), Terry is a lifelong resident of the Detroit area. He and Betty live currently in Bloomfield Township. They have six children, three of whom (Margaret, Kathy and Kevin) are a valuable part of the leadership team at the funeral home, and 18 grandchildren.

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Kathy Desmond Barr, CFSP Licensed Funeral Director, Vice-President and Treasurer kbarr@ajdesmond.com

Kathy has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 1990. She graduated from Marian High School in 1986, the University of Notre Dame in 1990, and the Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science in 1995. She has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals also designates her as a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner. Kathy is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association and the Michigan Funeral Directors Association. A parishioner of St. Hugo of the Hills, Kathy serves as an Eucharistic minister. A lifelong area resident, Kathy currently lives in Troy with her husband, Scott Barr, and their children.

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Kevin B. Desmond, CFSP Licensed Funeral Director, Vice-President and General Manager

"I work in funeral service to serve our community, and to provide the most meaningful experience for those who are going through a loss."

 

 

Kevin has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 2008. He earned a Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University in 2009 where he was the class vice president. Kevin also graduated from the University of Notre Dame Mendoza College of Business in 2008, majoring in Marketing, and from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School in 2004. He has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP). He is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association and Michigan Funeral Directors Association. Kevin previously coached youth lacrosse at St. Hugo grade school and U of D Jesuit High School for many years. Kevin is currently serving on the Angels' Place Board of Directors, Greenwood Cemetery (Birmingham) Advisory Board and is active with the Notre Dame Club of Detroit. A member of Holy Name parish, Kevin lives in Birmingham with his wife, Katrina Piligian Desmond, and their three children.

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Margaret A. Desmond Director of Human Resources, Technology and Marketing mdesmond@ajdesmond.com

"Accompanying a family through a difficult time and working with wonderful and dedicated colleagues keep me committed and engaged each and every day. It is a privilege to serve others."

 

Margaret joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2004. She graduated from Marian High School and she earned a Bachelors of Business Administration and a Masters of Arts in International Peace Studies from the University of Notre Dame. She completed additional graduate studies at Michigan State University. Prior to A.J. Desmond & Sons, Margaret worked in community development and education in Chicago, El Salvador and the Republic of Ireland, as well as at the University of Notre Dame and Michigan State University. A parishioner of the National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica, she is active at Marian High School.

Long time residents of Berkley, Margaret and her husband Carlos Nunez now live in Birmingham with their children.

Se habla español.

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John E. Desmond, CFSP, CCO Licensed Funeral Director

"To aid families in their time of need and to assist them in creating a celebration for someone they love, that is why I am in funeral service."

 

With more than fifty years in funeral wervice, John continues to serve and assist families. Growing up in Detroit, John graduated from St. Benedict Grade School, University of Detroit Jesuit High School, the University of Notre Dame with a Bachelors of Business Administration in 1967 and Wayne State University in 1968. A licensed funeral director since 1968, John has been a leader in funeral service throughout his career. John is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association and an active member of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association, serving as president in 1983-1984 and currently co-chairing their effort to assist Wayne County to bury the unclaimed deceased. John previously served as a member of the State Board of Examiners in Mortuary Science and an Associate Professor at Wayne State University Department of Mortuary Science.

John lives in Bloomfield with his wife Eileen, who recently retired from our Crooks Road location. They have three children and are the very engaged grandparents of four.

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Suzanne Seitz Behan, CPC, CFSP Licensed Funeral Director and Director of Pre-Planning Services

Suzanne has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 1996 and has directed pre-planning services since 1997. She graduated from the Academy of Sacred Heart, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, St. Petersburg College, Mortuary Science in 1996, and Sienna Heights College in 1997. Since 1999, the National Funeral Director Association has designated Suzanne as a Certified Preplanning Consultant (CPC). She has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals also designates her as a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner. A member of the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) and the Michigan Funeral Directors Association, Suzanne was recently appointed to the NFDA Pursuit of Excellence Committee. She is also a member of Royal Oak Chamber of Commerce and Royal Oak Business Women's Association. A Master Gardener, Suzanne was born and raised in the metro Detroit area, was a long time resident of Royal Oak and now lives in Troy.

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Gary V. Borg, CFSP Licensed Funeral Director, Manager

"For me, funeral service is a calling, and it provides me an outlet to give exceptional service at a time when it is greatly appreciated."

 

Gary started with A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2000. After spending three years in Naples, Florida, he returned north to A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2006. Gary possesses extensive knowledge in cremation options and personalized funeral services. He grew up in Marquette and has been working in funeral service since 1992. Gary earned a Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University. He is designated a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner by The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals and nationally as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP). He is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association, Michigan Funeral Directors Association, and the Michigan Embalmers Society.

 

Gary is a member of the National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica in Royal Oak. Currently, Gary serves as the vice president of the Shrine Grade School and Academy Dads’ Club and serves as the representative for the Dads’ Club on the school advisory committee.

 

Raised in the Upper Peninsula, Gary has found a home in metro Detroit. While he still loves to go up north to be in the woods, Gary with his wife and daughter are growing roots right here. A Green Bay Packers fan, he loves the Tigers and the Red Wings.

 

 

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Sherry Carter Licensed Funeral Director

Sherry joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2012 as a funeral service associate. In August 2016, she graduated from Wayne State University with a Bachelors of Mortuary Science, and having served her apprenticeship with us, she shortly thereafter became a licensed funeral director in 2016. Sherry lives in Ferndale with her family.

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Kelly Leaman Donahue Licensed Funeral Director

Kelly joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2015 as a funeral service associate. Already with a bachelors from the University of Michigan, Kelly graduated from Wayne State University with a Bachelors of Mortuary Science in 2016. After she served her apprenticeship with us, Kelly became a licensed funeral director in early 2017.

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Michael E. Flannery, CFSP Licensed Funeral Director

Mike has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 2001 and in funeral service since 1977. He graduated from Harper Woods Notre Dame High School in 1972, the University of Detroit with a Bachelor of Science in 1976 and the Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science in 1977.

 

As part of his on-going education, Mike has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals has designates him as a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner. Mike is a member of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association, the Michigan Embalmers Association, and serves on the Michigan Funeral Directors Association Disaster Committee. He is the a past president of MFDA District #6. Mike is a returning president of the Bloomfield Hills Rotary Club, where he previously received a Paul Harris Fellowship in recognition of his work for the Rotary Foundation. He was born and raised in the Detroit area and has lived many years in Royal Oak with his family. Mike is a member and a Eucharistic Minister of the National Shrine of the Little Flower Catholic Basilica.

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Scott Hurrell, CFSP Licensed Funeral Director, Manager

Scott started with A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2007. Growing up in Marquette, he began working in funeral service in 2004. Scott earned a Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University in 2008 where he was awarded the Gerald Cavallier Excellence in Embalming Award. Scott graduated from Marquette Senior High School where his athletic and academic accomplishments were recognized by the National Guard with the National Scholar-Athlete Award. Scott was also recognized for his service to the Marquette Rotary Club through the Paul Harris Fellowship Award. Majoring in physiology and chemistry, he also graduated from Northern Michigan University in 2006 with a Bachelor's of Science.

 

Scott has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP). In addition, The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professional recognizes Scott as a Certified Michigan Funeral Pracititioner. He is a member of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association and the Troy Rotary Club where he serves on the Board of Directors and is a pasat-president. He is also a member of the National Ski Patrol and enjoys numerous outdoor sports. Scott lives in Troy with his daughter.

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Kelly Jacek Licensed Funeral Director

Kelly joined A.J. Desmond & Sons Funeral Directors in 2014. In 2012, she earned a Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University and became licensed shortly thereafter. Raised in Canton, Kelly graduated from Plymouth Canton Community Schools. She is a member of the American Embalmers Association. Reading and enjoying the outdoors in her spare time, Kelly currently resides in Clawson with her family.

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Melissa MacEachran Licensed Funeral Director

Melissa started her career in funeral service at A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2004 and returned to work with us in 2018 after a career in non-profit management. Melissa graduated with a Bachelor degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State in 2006. She also has a Masters degree in Public Health. Melissa lives in Farmington Hills with her husband Tyler and their children.

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William J. Oldani, III, CFSP Licensed Funeral Director

Bill has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 1995, joining his father Bill on the staff. He graduated from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School in 1995 and from Wayne State University with a Bachelor of Science in Mortuary Science in 2004.

 

Bill is recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner by The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals. He is a member of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association (MFDA) and is the Treasurer of MFDA District 6. Bill also belongs to the National Funeral Directors Association and the Young Funeral Directors Association. A member of Holy Name Catholic Church, Bill, his wife Rachael and children live in Berkley.

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Rebecca Peters Licensed Funeral Director

Rebecca Peters recently joined A.J. Desmond & Sons Funeral Directors. Rebecca has been licensed since 2010. In addition to working as a funeral director, Rebecca is also an instructor in the Restorative Arts course in the Wayne State University College of Mortuary Science. She grew up in Warren and resides now in Harrison Township.

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Michael D. Withun, CFSP Licensed Funeral Director, Manager

Mike started with A.J. Desmond & Sons in 1992. He received his Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University. As part of his on-going education, Mike is recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals has designated him a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner. He is a member of the Michigan Embalmers Society, Michigan Funeral Directors Association and the National Funeral Directors Association. Mike also belongs to the Troy-Clawson Elks, the Troy Chamber of Commerce, and the Lutheran Church of the Master. Mike is a long-time resident of Troy.

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Cassandra Hock Licensed Funeral Director

Cassandra joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2017 as a funeral service associate. Already with a bachelors from the Oakland University, Cassandra graduated from Wayne State University with a Bachelors of Mortuary Science in 2018. After she served her apprenticeship with us, Cassandra became a licensed funeral director in early 2019. Enjoying life in Ferndale, she also practices yoga regularly.

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Karen Laing, MA, LLP Director of Bereavement Services

Karen joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2017. She earned a Bachelors of Science in Education from the University of Maryland, a Masters of Science in Human Resources from Rutgers University and a Masters of Arts in Clinical Psychology from the Michigan School of Professional Psychology. She has also attended specialized bereavement training through Alan Wolfelt’s Center for Loss and Life Transition. Prior to joining A.J. Desmond & Sons, Karen worked in non-profits helping clients including those suffering from addiction and grieving adults and children. She has experience as a teacher, facilitator, human resources professional and speaker. Karen lives in Novi with her two children.

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Michael Smela Advanced Preneed Specialist

Mike recently joined A.J. Desmond Sons and is focused on Advanced Preneed services. He previously in the insurance industry. He lives with his family in Bloomfield Hills.

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Paul S. Connell Licensed Funeral Director and Senior Vice President-Retired

"After serving families for over 40 years… I am honored and humbled to professionally guide families through the saddest times of their lives."

 

Paul has been serving families at the Vasu, Rodgers & Connell Chapel of A.J. Desmond & Sons for over 40 years. He graduated from Bloomfield Hills Lahser High School in 1970 and remains active with their alumni association. He graduated from Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science in 1974. Paul has been designated a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner by The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals. He is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association, the Michigan Funeral Directors Association and a past president of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association, District 6. Paul is a long time member of the board of directors and a two-time past president of the Birmingham Lions Club. His dedicated service to Lions Club International was recognized in 2007 when he received their prestigious Melvin Jones Award.

Paul is an active member of Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Church where he serves as an usher and is a past president of the Ushers Club. A lifelong resident of the Birmingham/Bloomfield area, Paul currently lives in Birmingham with his two children. In memory of his late wife, Cheryl, Paul serves on the board of directors of Sharing & Caring, a breast cancer education and support group at Beaumont Hospital.

Terence B. Desmond, CFSP

Licensed Funeral Director and President
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"I have spent my life in funeral service because I know that I can make a difference in people's lives at their most difficult hour."

 

For over 50 years, Terry Desmond has served families as a funeral director. He graduated from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School, the University of Notre Dame and the Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science. As part of his on-going continuing education, Terry is recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP). He is a member of the Advisory Board at the Wayne State University Department of Mortuary Science and a past State Director of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association.

 

Terry has always been very active in the community. He is a past Chairman of the Board of Angels' Place (Christian homes for developmentally disabled adults), a former board member of the the University of Detroit Jesuit High School and a former member of the Oakland County Senior Planning Coalition. Other community leadership has included co-founder and former board member of Troy Boys/Girls Club, co-founder of Troy Medi-Go, past vice-president of the Troy Chamber of Commerce, past president of the Kiwanis Club of Troy, past president of the Notre Dame Club of Detroit, former member of the Board of Directors of Marian High School, and past president of the Brother Rice and Marian High School Dads Clubs. Terry is also a past Parish Council president at St. Thomas More and is now an active member of St. Hugo of the Hills, where he and his wife Betty were co-presidents of the St. Hugo Parent Teacher Guild.

 

His community involvement has been recognized by many organizations including the Distinguished Citizen Award for City of Troy in 1982, the Italian Study Group's 2000 Italian-American of the Year, and the Marian High School Volunteer of the Year Award in 2003. Each school he attended has recognized his achievements, including the Award of the Year from the Notre Dame Club of Detroit in 1980, the Alumnus of the Year Award from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School in 2006 and most recently the 2015 Alumnus of the Year Award from the Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science. Terry and Betty have also received a special recognition for their continuing service to Marian High School and were honored by Guest House with the 2015 Bishop Kevin M. Britt Award in recognition of a significant ministry to the Catholic Church.

 

Raised in St. Benedict Parish (Highland Park), Terry is a lifelong resident of the Detroit area. He and Betty live currently in Bloomfield Township. They have six children, three of whom (Margaret, Kathy and Kevin) are a valuable part of the leadership team at the funeral home, and 18 grandchildren.

Kathy Desmond Barr, CFSP

Licensed Funeral Director, Vice-President and Treasurer
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Kathy has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 1990. She graduated from Marian High School in 1986, the University of Notre Dame in 1990, and the Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science in 1995. She has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals also designates her as a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner. Kathy is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association and the Michigan Funeral Directors Association. A parishioner of St. Hugo of the Hills, Kathy serves as an Eucharistic minister. A lifelong area resident, Kathy currently lives in Troy with her husband, Scott Barr, and their children.

Kevin B. Desmond, CFSP

Licensed Funeral Director, Vice-President and General Manager
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"I work in funeral service to serve our community, and to provide the most meaningful experience for those who are going through a loss."

 

 

Kevin has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 2008. He earned a Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University in 2009 where he was the class vice president. Kevin also graduated from the University of Notre Dame Mendoza College of Business in 2008, majoring in Marketing, and from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School in 2004. He has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP). He is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association and Michigan Funeral Directors Association. Kevin previously coached youth lacrosse at St. Hugo grade school and U of D Jesuit High School for many years. Kevin is currently serving on the Angels' Place Board of Directors, Greenwood Cemetery (Birmingham) Advisory Board and is active with the Notre Dame Club of Detroit. A member of Holy Name parish, Kevin lives in Birmingham with his wife, Katrina Piligian Desmond, and their three children.

Margaret A. Desmond

Director of Human Resources, Technology and Marketing
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"Accompanying a family through a difficult time and working with wonderful and dedicated colleagues keep me committed and engaged each and every day. It is a privilege to serve others."

 

Margaret joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2004. She graduated from Marian High School and she earned a Bachelors of Business Administration and a Masters of Arts in International Peace Studies from the University of Notre Dame. She completed additional graduate studies at Michigan State University. Prior to A.J. Desmond & Sons, Margaret worked in community development and education in Chicago, El Salvador and the Republic of Ireland, as well as at the University of Notre Dame and Michigan State University. A parishioner of the National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica, she is active at Marian High School.

Long time residents of Berkley, Margaret and her husband Carlos Nunez now live in Birmingham with their children.

Se habla español.

John E. Desmond, CFSP, CCO

Licensed Funeral Director
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"To aid families in their time of need and to assist them in creating a celebration for someone they love, that is why I am in funeral service."

 

With more than fifty years in funeral wervice, John continues to serve and assist families. Growing up in Detroit, John graduated from St. Benedict Grade School, University of Detroit Jesuit High School, the University of Notre Dame with a Bachelors of Business Administration in 1967 and Wayne State University in 1968. A licensed funeral director since 1968, John has been a leader in funeral service throughout his career. John is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association and an active member of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association, serving as president in 1983-1984 and currently co-chairing their effort to assist Wayne County to bury the unclaimed deceased. John previously served as a member of the State Board of Examiners in Mortuary Science and an Associate Professor at Wayne State University Department of Mortuary Science.

John lives in Bloomfield with his wife Eileen, who recently retired from our Crooks Road location. They have three children and are the very engaged grandparents of four.

Suzanne Seitz Behan, CPC, CFSP

Licensed Funeral Director and Director of Pre-Planning Services
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Suzanne has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 1996 and has directed pre-planning services since 1997. She graduated from the Academy of Sacred Heart, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, St. Petersburg College, Mortuary Science in 1996, and Sienna Heights College in 1997. Since 1999, the National Funeral Director Association has designated Suzanne as a Certified Preplanning Consultant (CPC). She has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals also designates her as a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner. A member of the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) and the Michigan Funeral Directors Association, Suzanne was recently appointed to the NFDA Pursuit of Excellence Committee. She is also a member of Royal Oak Chamber of Commerce and Royal Oak Business Women's Association. A Master Gardener, Suzanne was born and raised in the metro Detroit area, was a long time resident of Royal Oak and now lives in Troy.

Gary V. Borg, CFSP

Licensed Funeral Director, Manager
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"For me, funeral service is a calling, and it provides me an outlet to give exceptional service at a time when it is greatly appreciated."

 

Gary started with A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2000. After spending three years in Naples, Florida, he returned north to A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2006. Gary possesses extensive knowledge in cremation options and personalized funeral services. He grew up in Marquette and has been working in funeral service since 1992. Gary earned a Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University. He is designated a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner by The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals and nationally as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP). He is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association, Michigan Funeral Directors Association, and the Michigan Embalmers Society.

 

Gary is a member of the National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica in Royal Oak. Currently, Gary serves as the vice president of the Shrine Grade School and Academy Dads’ Club and serves as the representative for the Dads’ Club on the school advisory committee.

 

Raised in the Upper Peninsula, Gary has found a home in metro Detroit. While he still loves to go up north to be in the woods, Gary with his wife and daughter are growing roots right here. A Green Bay Packers fan, he loves the Tigers and the Red Wings.

 

 

Sherry Carter

Licensed Funeral Director
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Sherry joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2012 as a funeral service associate. In August 2016, she graduated from Wayne State University with a Bachelors of Mortuary Science, and having served her apprenticeship with us, she shortly thereafter became a licensed funeral director in 2016. Sherry lives in Ferndale with her family.

Kelly Leaman Donahue

Licensed Funeral Director
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Kelly joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2015 as a funeral service associate. Already with a bachelors from the University of Michigan, Kelly graduated from Wayne State University with a Bachelors of Mortuary Science in 2016. After she served her apprenticeship with us, Kelly became a licensed funeral director in early 2017.

Michael E. Flannery, CFSP

Licensed Funeral Director
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Mike has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 2001 and in funeral service since 1977. He graduated from Harper Woods Notre Dame High School in 1972, the University of Detroit with a Bachelor of Science in 1976 and the Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science in 1977.

 

As part of his on-going education, Mike has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals has designates him as a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner. Mike is a member of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association, the Michigan Embalmers Association, and serves on the Michigan Funeral Directors Association Disaster Committee. He is the a past president of MFDA District #6. Mike is a returning president of the Bloomfield Hills Rotary Club, where he previously received a Paul Harris Fellowship in recognition of his work for the Rotary Foundation. He was born and raised in the Detroit area and has lived many years in Royal Oak with his family. Mike is a member and a Eucharistic Minister of the National Shrine of the Little Flower Catholic Basilica.

Scott Hurrell, CFSP

Licensed Funeral Director, Manager
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Scott started with A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2007. Growing up in Marquette, he began working in funeral service in 2004. Scott earned a Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University in 2008 where he was awarded the Gerald Cavallier Excellence in Embalming Award. Scott graduated from Marquette Senior High School where his athletic and academic accomplishments were recognized by the National Guard with the National Scholar-Athlete Award. Scott was also recognized for his service to the Marquette Rotary Club through the Paul Harris Fellowship Award. Majoring in physiology and chemistry, he also graduated from Northern Michigan University in 2006 with a Bachelor's of Science.

 

Scott has completed all the requirements to be recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP). In addition, The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professional recognizes Scott as a Certified Michigan Funeral Pracititioner. He is a member of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association and the Troy Rotary Club where he serves on the Board of Directors and is a pasat-president. He is also a member of the National Ski Patrol and enjoys numerous outdoor sports. Scott lives in Troy with his daughter.

Kelly Jacek

Licensed Funeral Director
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Kelly joined A.J. Desmond & Sons Funeral Directors in 2014. In 2012, she earned a Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University and became licensed shortly thereafter. Raised in Canton, Kelly graduated from Plymouth Canton Community Schools. She is a member of the American Embalmers Association. Reading and enjoying the outdoors in her spare time, Kelly currently resides in Clawson with her family.

Melissa MacEachran

Licensed Funeral Director
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Melissa started her career in funeral service at A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2004 and returned to work with us in 2018 after a career in non-profit management. Melissa graduated with a Bachelor degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State in 2006. She also has a Masters degree in Public Health. Melissa lives in Farmington Hills with her husband Tyler and their children.

William J. Oldani, III, CFSP

Licensed Funeral Director
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Bill has been with A.J. Desmond & Sons since 1995, joining his father Bill on the staff. He graduated from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School in 1995 and from Wayne State University with a Bachelor of Science in Mortuary Science in 2004.

 

Bill is recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner by The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals. He is a member of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association (MFDA) and is the Treasurer of MFDA District 6. Bill also belongs to the National Funeral Directors Association and the Young Funeral Directors Association. A member of Holy Name Catholic Church, Bill, his wife Rachael and children live in Berkley.

Rebecca Peters

Licensed Funeral Director
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Rebecca Peters recently joined A.J. Desmond & Sons Funeral Directors. Rebecca has been licensed since 2010. In addition to working as a funeral director, Rebecca is also an instructor in the Restorative Arts course in the Wayne State University College of Mortuary Science. She grew up in Warren and resides now in Harrison Township.

Michael D. Withun, CFSP

Licensed Funeral Director, Manager
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Mike started with A.J. Desmond & Sons in 1992. He received his Bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science from Wayne State University. As part of his on-going education, Mike is recognized as a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals has designated him a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner. He is a member of the Michigan Embalmers Society, Michigan Funeral Directors Association and the National Funeral Directors Association. Mike also belongs to the Troy-Clawson Elks, the Troy Chamber of Commerce, and the Lutheran Church of the Master. Mike is a long-time resident of Troy.

Cassandra Hock

Licensed Funeral Director
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Cassandra joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2017 as a funeral service associate. Already with a bachelors from the Oakland University, Cassandra graduated from Wayne State University with a Bachelors of Mortuary Science in 2018. After she served her apprenticeship with us, Cassandra became a licensed funeral director in early 2019. Enjoying life in Ferndale, she also practices yoga regularly.

Karen Laing, MA, LLP

Director of Bereavement Services
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Karen joined A.J. Desmond & Sons in 2017. She earned a Bachelors of Science in Education from the University of Maryland, a Masters of Science in Human Resources from Rutgers University and a Masters of Arts in Clinical Psychology from the Michigan School of Professional Psychology. She has also attended specialized bereavement training through Alan Wolfelt’s Center for Loss and Life Transition. Prior to joining A.J. Desmond & Sons, Karen worked in non-profits helping clients including those suffering from addiction and grieving adults and children. She has experience as a teacher, facilitator, human resources professional and speaker. Karen lives in Novi with her two children.

Michael Smela

Advanced Preneed Specialist
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Mike recently joined A.J. Desmond Sons and is focused on Advanced Preneed services. He previously in the insurance industry. He lives with his family in Bloomfield Hills.

Paul S. Connell

Licensed Funeral Director and Senior Vice President-Retired
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"After serving families for over 40 years… I am honored and humbled to professionally guide families through the saddest times of their lives."

 

Paul has been serving families at the Vasu, Rodgers & Connell Chapel of A.J. Desmond & Sons for over 40 years. He graduated from Bloomfield Hills Lahser High School in 1970 and remains active with their alumni association. He graduated from Wayne State University School of Mortuary Science in 1974. Paul has been designated a Certified Michigan Funeral Practitioner by The Michigan Institute of Funeral Professionals. He is a member of the National Funeral Directors Association, the Michigan Funeral Directors Association and a past president of the Michigan Funeral Directors Association, District 6. Paul is a long time member of the board of directors and a two-time past president of the Birmingham Lions Club. His dedicated service to Lions Club International was recognized in 2007 when he received their prestigious Melvin Jones Award.

Paul is an active member of Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Church where he serves as an usher and is a past president of the Ushers Club. A lifelong resident of the Birmingham/Bloomfield area, Paul currently lives in Birmingham with his two children. In memory of his late wife, Cheryl, Paul serves on the board of directors of Sharing & Caring, a breast cancer education and support group at Beaumont Hospital.