Through a new business arrangement, customers of Lasher Funeral Home in Woodstock will be served by two funeral homes owned by the Wilsey family in Phoenicia and Saugerties. Lasher has not been accepting business for several months, and plans call for the property to be sold and the parlor torn down.
After failing to find a new funeral director after the death of Ken Peterson in 2019, Lasher’s management team approached the Wilsey family, third- and fourth-generation funeral directors, about taking over the business. Jack Wilsey and his son, Eric, operate the Seamon-Wilsey Funeral Home in Saugerties. Jack’s brother, Mark, runs the E. B. Gormley Funeral Home in Phoenicia, with the help of Eric. According to the agreement, the Wilsey family has been entrusted with the complete historical funeral records and all arranged-in-advance funeral records established by Peterson and his predecessors, Robert Boyd and Victor Lasher.
Jack Wilsey explained the value of the historical records.
“We receive numerous calls from families who are doing genealogy,” he said. “Calls to the funeral home that handled the death provide a lot of the answers to people’s questions. The records will be under our care so they are preserved as time moves forward.”
Jack’s and Mark’s grandfather and father were both New York State licensed directors. Their father purchased Seamon-Wilsey Funeral Home in Saugerties in 1956 and was joined by Jack in 1980. Mark entered the profession in 1985. Three years later, they became partners with Eugene Gormley. Eric, Jack’s son, was licensed in 2008 and represents the fourth generation of the Wilsey family to become a licensed funeral director.
“Over the years, we had a close relationship with Bob Boyd and Kenny Peterson,” said Jack Wilsey. “As colleagues in funeral service, we have helped each other out as the need arose. The Wilsey family will continue to provide professional and caring service.”