John Daviston , CFSP Owner/President 2005 to present
John grew up in Newnan and graduated from Newnan High School. He is also graduate of Auburn University and Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service. John holds the distinction of being a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) which is the highest professional designation in the funeral industry. He is a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer as well as a licensed agent for insurance sales. John is member of SouthCrest Church, the Newnan Rotary Club and the Atlanta Chapter of Young Entrepreneurs' Organization (Y.E.O.). He is a graduate of Leadership Coweta and is a graduate of the 2015 class of Leadership Georgia. He previously served as a board member of Leadership Coweta, The Newnan Coweta Boys and Girls Club, the Community in Schools program, the United Way, the Summit Family YMCA, The Abby's Angels Foundation, Wesley Woods of Newnan-Peachtree City and was the chairman of the Keith Brooking Children's Foundation. He was a founder and organizing member of a former community bank in Coweta County. He is a current board member of the Coweta County Development Authority and The Newnan-Coweta Chamber of Commerce. While Terry Daviston is still active, working many funerals, John bought the business from Terry in 2005. At the age of 33, John was named by Georgia Trend magazine one of the “Top 40 under 40: Georgia’s Best & Brightest.” In July of 2020, the Newnan Times-Herald and the Newnan Coweta Magazine named John as one of the 25 most influential people in Coweta County. He is married to Meredith Mosley Daviston and is the father of Wilson Daviston and Ruby Adair Daviston.
Terry Daviston Owner, 1986 to 2005 In Loving Memory 1941-2021
Terry was born in Pea Ridge, Alabama and is a longtime Newnan resident since purchasing the funeral home from the McKoon family. He served in the U.S. Army in Japan for several years where he was in Military Intelligence. Terry graduated from the Kentucky School of Mortuary Science and is a licensed funeral director & embalmer. He is a Past President of the Georgia Funeral Directors Association and is a member of the First Baptist Church of Newnan, the White Oak Golden K Kiwanis Club. He served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Wesley Woods of Newnan-Peachtree City and served as a member of the Coweta County Development Authority for 18 years. In 2004, Governor Perdue appointed Terry to the Georgia State Board of Funeral Service where he served for nearly 10 years. He is married to Martha Ann and is the father of Tracy Daviston Piepho and John Daviston. He is the proud grandfather to Sawyer Piepho, Wilson Daviston, and Ruby Daviston. Terry enjoys spending time with his family and riding his Harley-Davidson.
D. Terry Daviston
"Blessed is the man who endures trials, because when he passes the test, he will receive the crown of life that He has promised to those who love Him." (John 1:12) A popular saying of the day addresses the theory that when a person leaves this world for the glories of heaven, a library closes. That might need to be expanded in the case of Douglas Terry Daviston. A review of this storied life would call for a library, a full-length feature film, a tome of short stories and any number of billboards. Terry was born October 15,1941, in the tiny community of Pea Ridge, Alabama. He was one of two sons born to Ed and Mattie Harris Daviston. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother Charles. While Pea Ridge was only about forty miles from Birmingham, it was light years away from the reality of the old south as it raced to become a part of a contemporary society in an ever-changing world. As a young boy, Terry spent the afternoons sitting outside the coal mine where his daddy worked in the darkness of those caverns and the inherent poverty of that world. While he had the utmost respect for the legions of men who had labored for generations in the mines, he knew that he wanted more opportunities for himself outside the mill village where he was raised. He was smart enough to realize that if he wanted to go far in life, he would have to seize every opportunity and turn the life lessons he learned into the building blocks for his life and for his future family. So at the tender age of sixteen he was hired as the bus driver for the school. He had already signed on to keep the wood stove burning in their one room school for the regal amount of 40 cents a week. Anyone who has ever ridden in a car with Terry knows full well what a blessing it was that those children made it to school every day. An indelible impression was made on Terry upon hearing that he and his schoolmates were referred to as "those poor children from Pea Ridge". That lit a fire in him that could not be quenched. Terry's interest in funeral service was borne out of his being at so many funerals as he grew up. He marveled at the men who drove those huge shiny cars, and that only intensified his quest. By the way, he had a lifelong obsession for shiny cars, but he preferred them to be white. A burgundy interior would do, as red might be a little flashy for the ladies with blue hair. As was common at the time, Uncle Sam came calling and he heeded that call. While in the Army he realized he had a knack for cryptography and that was his skill in the service; and with that came top secret clearance while he served in Tokyo. One can only imagine the culture shock of a "snot nosed kid" (his words) from Pea Ridge upon landing in Tokyo! Anyone who knows Terry and has collaborated with him will attest that he had the worst penmanship in the world. They could have done away with cryptography and just let him write everything in his scrawling handwriting. After 33 months in the service, Terry returned home. He started college, but soon grew weary of that and heeded the call of a friend who had recently moved to Cobb County, Georgia with the offer of a job in the local cement plant. Well, anything was better than what he was doing; so he loaded up all his clothes in a paper garbage bag (a luggage choice he had for years afterwards) and set up residence with his buddy. It was during this time that he began working part time at Castellaw Funeral Home in Smyrna. He loved the party life of the big city. In 1965 he was also introduced to a pretty, blonde-haired schoolteacher by the name of Martha Ann Rutherford. While she had a boy friend at the time, he had to be home early at night. That being said, as soon as he went home, she took up with her late-night date, Douglas Terry Daviston. Ten months after their first date, they were married. Soon after they loaded up and moved to Louisville, Kentucky, so Terry could go to mortuary college. Upon completion of his degree, Terry worked for funeral homes in Vernon and York, AL before they moved back to Smyrna and he began his career with Castellaw as their general manager. Still, Terry knew there must be something better around the corner. Upon learning that there was a firm in Newnan on the market, he jumped at the chance. After a lot of back and forth in negotiations, Terry closed the sale on McKoon Funeral Home in 1986. After the closing Mr. Robert McKoon told Terry that he knew their family business was in good hands. He was the only one at his home who would be overjoyed by the move, but his reluctant family made the move. What Terry and his family learned was that Newnan would come to embrace Terry and his family and Terry's desire to serve the entire community. Over the span of his career, he was ever a presence in every facet of the life of Newnan and Coweta County. His work was a labor of love for him, and that was the watchword he impressed on everyone on his staff. His philosophy was that he did not pay an employee's salary. It was paid by the families that the firm served. Terry immersed himself in the lives of all the churches in the community. It was not unusual for a pastor to look out on Sunday morning and find him smiling back and shaking hands. It was also a fair wager that there would be an extra check in the offering plate. Only God in heaven knows how many lives were touched by his benevolence, for it was Terry's desire to help where there was a need and not bother with taking credit for his gifts. This was also the same guy who, in the dark of night, would throw turnip green seeds in your newly plowed and seeded front yard! Terry knew that as he became so successful, it became his responsibility to give back to his professional organizations and his community. He was active in the Georgia Funeral Directors' Association and went on to head that organization. He also served on State Board of Funeral Service. In his hometown he was associated with The Kiwanis Club and served on the advisory boards for numerous non-profits. He was a key figure for many years on The Coweta County Development Authority and the Newnan-Coweta Chamber of Commerce. Terry Daviston wore a variety of hats during his almost 80 years. He will be remembered for his honesty, loyalty, generosity; and yes, he was at heart, a humble man who had a strong servant spirit and a profound respect for the dignity of everyone he knew. Nothing in life gave him more honor than his role as a staunch family head and husband to his "bride" Martha Ann. Nothing was more important than his desire to serve as an example to his children Tracy and her husband Jim Piepho, John Daviston and his wife Meredith. His grandchildren Sawyer Daviston Piepho, Wilson Lanier Daviston and Ruby Adair Daviston won the grandfather lottery. Terry's family will receive friends at McKoon Funeral Home & Crematory on Monday, October 11, 2021 between 6:00 PM and 8:00 PM. The service of thanksgiving for his life will be on Tuesday, October 12, 2021, at 2:00 PM, Newnan First Baptist Church with Dr. Joel Richardson officiating. Interment will be at Forest Lawn Memorial Park. The current and previous team members of McKoon Funeral Home will serve as honorary pallbearers. Flowers are welcome or memorial contributions may be made to The Atlanta Speech School at www.atlantaspeechschool.org, Coweta Samaritan Clinic at www.cowetasamaritanclinic.org , or First Baptist Church of Newnan at fbcnewnan.org. Condolences may be expressed online at www.mckoon.com.
McKoon Funeral Home and Crematory 770-253-4580.
Lamar Wright is a native of Newnan. He graduated from Newnan High School. He holds a degree in management from West Georgia College and graduated with highest honors from The Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Srrvice. Lamar joined the staff of McKoon in 1988. He is married to Cathy Jackson Wright. His son, Brian, is a pilot for UPS. His younger son, Adam, is a musician and composer in Nashville. He is blessed with four grandchildren. The Wrights are members of Central Baptist Church and deeply involved in the music ministry of the church.
Glen Burkett, CCO Senior Funeral Director
Glen Burkett grew up in Smyrna, GA and is a graduate of Campbell High School. Glen is an Eagle Scout and assists several Boy Scout organizations in Coweta County. He has worked at McKoon Funeral Home since graduating from Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service in 1995. Glen is a second generation funeral director and emblamer and is a member of The Academy of Graduate Embalmers of Georgia and is a Certified Crematory Operated with the Cremation Association of North America. He and his wife, Erica Wilson Burkett, who is employed at Glanton Elementary School, live in Grantville with their daughter, Anna.
Ryan Kelly, CCO
Ryan was born in Hendersonville, NC where he lived until moving to Newnan in 1997. He is a 2003 graduate of East Coweta High School in Sharpsburg and a 2011 graduate of Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service. Ryan is a second generation funeral director-his father is the manager of a funeral home in South Carolina. He is a Certified Crematory Operator by the Cremation Association of North America. Prior to pursuing a career in funeral service, he was a avid skateboarder and traveled the world competing in international competitions. Ryan and his wife, Staci Stoel Kelly are active members of Newnan First United Methodist Church where Staci teaches the confirmation class. They are the proud parents of Walter Thomas Kelly and Edward Michael Kelly.
Jeanie is our Office Manager and handles the legal documentation for families. She routinely handles Social Security notification, filing life insurance claims & coordination the filing of death certificates, and working with the Veterans Administration. She is a native of Roanoke, AL, graduate of Handley High School and has lived in Newnan since 1995. She is married to Eddie R. Smith, Jr. and together they have 5 children. Jeanie and her family are active members of Mills Chapel Baptist Church.
Chase MacKinen Funeral Director
Chase Mackinen was born in Upstate New York and spent most of his life in Newnan. He graduated from East Coweta High School in 2007 and Gupton Jones College of Funeral Service in 2013 with Honors. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his wife Megan, daughter Emerson, his animals Charlotte and Stella, playing music, reading, and cooking.
Kaitlynn Gillette Funeral Director
Kaitlynn Gillette was born and raised in Newnan, GA. Kaitlynn is a 2014 graduate of East Coweta High School in Sharpsburg, GA, a 2019 graduate of Brewton-Parker College in Mount Vernon, GA, and a 2020 graduate of Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service. Prior to pursuing a career in funeral service, she was a softball pitcher and even played in college. Kaitlynn enjoys traveling and finding new places to explore. She also enjoys watching the Atlanta Braves, bowling with her dad, and playing trivia with her mom.
Don Daly Funeral Director/Bereavement Counselor
Born in New York, Don had a business opportunity to move to Georgia in 1983, where he now calls home.
Don has a long, diversified career in caring for people during their most difficult times. Over the last 26 years, he has ministered to people in many different capacities as a funeral director, hospice chaplain, and grief counselor. Don is a graduate of Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service, as well as a graduate of the University of The South's Theology Education for Ministry Program. He is also a longstanding member of the American Academy of Bereavement.
Don and his wife Linda are members of Newnan Presbyterian Church and are the proud parents of 7, grandparents to 8, and great-grandparents to 3.
Alex Elliott Funeral Apprentice
Alex Elliott was born and raised in Newnan, Georgia. He is a 2012 graduate of Newnan High School. After high school, Alex enlisted into the US Navy, where he was stationed in Sasebo, Japan, and New Orleans, Louisiana. After his enlistment, he attended Georgia State University, where he obtained his Bachelor’s in Political Science. In 2021, he graduated from Gupton- Jones College of Funeral Service. His hobbies are playing guitar and spending time with family and friends.
Stanley grew up Newnan and graduated from Newnan High School. He and his wife Debbie Adams Lanier have two sons, Jay & Charlie Lanier. For many years, Stanley and his father owned and operated Lanier Used Cars on Temple Avenue. Stanley and his family are longtime, active members of First Baptist Church.
David Smith has worked with McKoon Funeral Home for over 30 years. A native of Newnan, David served on the Newnan Police force for over 30 years retiring as a Lieutenant. His sons and grandsons all live in Newnan. David is a Mason and is the secretary of Coweta 60.
Rob Harris was born in Shreveport, Louisiana. He is a licensed funeral service apprentice. As the son of missionaries, he spent over 12 years overseas in Ethiopia and Kenya, East Africa. He is a graduate of Texas Bible College in Houston Texas and has been an ordained minister for over 37 years. He has served in the following countries as a missionary: Nigeria, Cameroon, England, Ireland and in Scotland. He also served as pastor in churches in Texas and Indiana. Rob is an avid weather/storm follower and serves as our staff meteorologist. He is married to his wife, Candice, for 33 years and has two children and two grandchildren.
Rev. Joe Strickland
Rev. Joe Strickland is a native of Newnan, after graduating from Newnan High School, Joe joined the Air Force in 1960 serving at RAF Sculthorpe Air Base in England & Etain Air Base in France during the Cuban Missile Crisis. He served four years in the Air Force and two years in the Reserves. Joe worked for Playtex in Newnan and later Avery Dennison Co. in Peachtree City for 24 years as a buyer in logistics. He was called to the ministry in 1979 and completed studies through Emmanuel College in Franklin Springs, GA and was ordained in the Georgia Conference. Rev. Strickland has served in the ministry for over 30 years, 18 years as Associate Pastor and twelve years as the Senior Pastor at the Newnan Spiritual Renewal Church (Pentecostal). He retired as Senior Pastor in December 2009 and joined the team at McKoon Funeral Home in February 2010. His hobbies include listening to music from the 1940’s & 50’s, collecting Western movies, and studying WWII history. He is married to Linda Bledsoe Strickland and is the father of Angie Strickland Dolan.
Curtis Mote Old Timer
Curtis was born and raised in Newnan. He retired from Coweta Fayette EMC after 43 years of service as Vice-President of Operations. Curtis and his wife, Pat, have three children and five grandchildren. He and his wife attend Newnan City Church. Curtis enjoys woodworking and fishing.
Richard has been associated with McKoon Funeral Home for many years as a host at visitations and currently serves as a staff organist. A member of Central Baptist Church of Newnan, he is a life long resident of Moreland. He is a retired educator having taught English literature and composition at Newnan High School.
In Loving Memory
June 5, 1986-October 19, 2013
In Loving Memory
August 1, 1944-February 21, 2015