Ray Ireland, of the John M Ireland & Son Funeral Home and Chapel, was born and raised in the country around Seneca and Joplin, MO. He always had an interest in ambulances and wanted to drive one when he grew old enough. When he was about 15 years old, he took a bus ride to Joplin and walked to the Thornhill-Dillion Funeral Home.
Mr. Thornhill liked to talk about the day that Ray came into his office and introduced himself. He said Ray didn’t just ask for a job, he said, “'Mr. Thornhill, I’ve come to work for you!”
Mr. Thornhill asked Ray what he thought he could do at the funeral home and Ray said, “He could cut the lawn and sweep the walks and wash the cars.”
Mr. Thornhill was impressed with this enterprising young man and put him to work. His years there were educational, and he convinced Ray that the funeral business was where he had a future. They taught him to drive when he turned 16 and let him drive the flower car to the cemetery.
Mr. Cooper was a funeral director from Miami, OK and a good friend of Mr. Thornhill’s. He was impressed with Ray, who was quickly nicknamed “Hickory” because he came from the sticks around Seneca, MO. Mr. Cooper offered him a job at his funeral home in Miami, OK and a place to live in an apartment.
Ray worked for Mr. Cooper for about a year before he joined the U.S. Army and shipped overseas within eight weeks of his induction to serve three years in Italy, France, and Germany during World War ll.
In 1944, he came back to the Cooper Funeral Home which helped him go to the Dallas Institute of Mortuary Science. He graduated and continued to work at Cooper's until 1951 when he married a Miami native, Mary Weisinger. Ray and Mary moved to McAlester, OK where he worked for the Chaney Funeral Home.
After about a year, the couple moved to Aurora, MO and worked for the Marsh Funeral Home until 1956. They moved to the Brim-Daniel Funeral Home and lived at the funeral home in Walnut Grove, MO.
John Ireland was born in 1961, shortly after Ray Ireland began working for Ferry Funeral Home in Nevada, MO. John grew up going on ambulance rides with his father and found his passion in funeral service. He graduated from mortuary college in Kansas City, MO, while working and living at McGilley Funeral Home. John found his way to Oklahoma and began working for Bill Eisenhour in Midwest City, OK.
He then began a career as a Sales Representative for Cooper Burial Vaults learning all aspects of the funeral business before venturing into his own entrepreneurial journey. John Ireland opened the doors to his very own funeral home in the early 90’s. The establishment of John M. Ireland & Son Funeral Home and Chapel in “Old Town” Moore, OK, began as the first funeral home in the town of Moore.
The Ireland Family Funeral Home has been serving the Oklahoma community for nearly 30 years and has consistently been awarded “Best Funeral Service” in Moore and Oklahoma City. Three generations family owned and operated, and it feels as if The Ireland Family is just getting started with multiple locations in Moore and Oklahoma City, they are always looking to expand to better meet the needs of all families during the most difficult times. On average, John Ireland, and his staff, serve over 1,200 families a year with no signs of slowing down. Just a phone call away. The Most Reasonable Choice
"I believe it is important for a business to be involved with the people and in the community. My family and I live and volunteer in Cleveland County. While the majority of funeral homes in the Oklahoma City area are owned by large out-of-state holding companies, John M Ireland & Son Funeral Home & Chapel is a locally and independently owned business.
"Our quality never varies. Our standards are the highest in every instance. No matter what the price, you will receive only the finest in service and only the highest quality in merchandise."