My wife Ellen and I have owned the Paul F. Kent Funeral Home since November 1978. Located in the quaint village of Cookstown, this funeral home has been serving the area of Simcoe County for over 90 years.
I have been a licensed funeral director for over 47 years. I started in my early teens gained experience working part time at Funeral Homes while in high school. While completing my education at Humber College, I apprentice at the Morley Bedford Funeral Home in Toronto, Ontario. I continued my career there after graduating eventually becoming assistant manager. In 1978 we purchased the Hughes Funeral in Cookstown, fulfilling a life long dream of owning our own Funeral Home.
Having settled into the community, we welcomed three children, Lisa, David and Michael. Now, having all been an integral part of the family business. We enjoy contributing to the community having been involved with many charities and organizations. I most notably enjoyed the times I spent as a member of the Cookstown Loins club and my involvement with minor hockey.
Sadly, our son David passed away of cancer in 2007, although this time was very difficult for the family, it brought an even greater sense of importance to our family run business. We have been on the other side of the desk. We know how difficult this time is. We truly understand.
Along with our family the Paul F. Kent Funeral Home has a dedicated staff to serve you. We are always available 24 hours a day.
The funeral home in Cookstown has been in business for over 118 years. The Kent Family have owned the funeral home for 42 of those years. The funeral home was originally on the main street in a building that still stands today. It was frequently call the Orange Hall. This building was first used as a cabinetmaker’s shop and after about 1898 it became the local funeral parlour. The top floor used for various men’s meeting groups. The lower floor was divided in three sections. The front section was a furniture store, the centre part was the funeral parlour and the north room was an embalming room. We understand the first undertaker in Cookstown was Robert Walker. His business was later taken over by T.A .Jebb. Mr. Jebb had a team of black horses to pull the horse drawn hearse and the undertaker rode on a seat at the front of the coach with his driver. In the early 1900’s funerals were held from the home of the deceased where the casket was placed in the parlour and a black wreath placed on the door. Mr. Charles Watson then took over the business. The Watsons lived on King Street close to Hwy 89 and when their home burned down in 1942. He bought the present day location of the funeral home, 16 King Street North, where they resided. Charles Watson died in 1950 and had already turned the business over to his son-in-law Lloyd Hughes who remodeled the main floor and moved the funeral home from the main street to the present location. Lloyd and Jean Hughes owned the funeral home until 1978 when the Kent Family took over and continue to run it today.