Heritage Staff

Our Staff

W. Andrew Byrd, Co-Owner / President

Andy Byrd is a 1988 graduate of Erskine College and the Executive MBA Program from the Bryan School of Business and Economics at UNCG. He spent 11 years with the Cone Mills Corporation and 13 years as a partner in the Financial Services industry with Al Cannon, a 4th generation Funeral Director and son of James A. Cannon. It was through years as business partners and years of discussion between the Cannon and Byrd families that led to the creation of Heritage Funeral Home.

Andy and his wife, Tyree, have three children; Merritt (22), Parker (19) and Anna Clair (15). The Byrds are active members of Buncombe Street United Methodist Church where Andy served on the Youth Board and College Advisory Board. He is a 2011 Fellow of the Bon Secours St. Francis Foundation Leadership Forum, serves on the Advisory Committee to the Museum & Art Gallery of Bob Jones University , was Vice President of the E.C. Foundation, is President of the Erskine College Alumni Association and is an active member of the Simpsonville Rotary Club serving as program coordinator. Andy served as a member of The Family Effect Board of Directors, the Erskine Board of Counselors, the United Way Board of Union County, as Director of “Homeward Bound”, a Christian based family retreat, and is past President of the Erskine Alumni Association.

Andy is Co-Owner and President of Heritage Funeral Home.
Click this link to send Andy an email.

Preston Charles Calvert, Jr., Director of Funeral Service

Chuck Calvert is a 1978 graduate of Hillcrest High School and has served in the Funeral Industry in the local community since 1999. Prior to the funeral business, Chuck worked at Cryovac, and then served as the Youth Pastor at Temple Baptist Church. Chuck has lived in Simpsonville his entire life and is the father of two grown sons; Hayden and Ruston. He is the son of Preston & Jackie Calvert, also life-long residents of Simpsonville and members of Temple Baptist Church.

Chuck is a licensed Funeral Director providing guidance to families based on experience from many years of dedicated service to families across the Golden Strip Communities.

Chuck is an ordained minister and serves as the Director of Funeral Service at Heritage Funeral Home.
Click this link to send Chuck an email.

James Wesley Davis, Duel License Apprentice

Jimmy Davis is a native of Greenville, a 1988 graduate from Wofford College and earned a Masters of Business Administration “MBA” from Clemson University. After graduation Jimmy remained in the upstate and worked for a local accounting firm where he earned his Certified Public Accountant “CPA” certification. He is a member of the AICPA and SCACPA. Prior to joining the Heritage staff, Jimmy spent 15 years as the Controller with Pepsi Cola of Greenville.

Jimmy has been an active member of Buncombe Street United Methodist Church his entire life where he and his wife attend today. He serves on the Staff Parrish Committee, the Sports and Recreation Committee, and serves the Church as a volunteer with the sound and media productions during contemporary services. Jimmy has been an active member of the Foothills Emmaus Community, an upstate Christian organization, since 2000.

Jimmy and his wife, Lou Ellen, have been married 23 years and have one grown son, Wes, a current senior at the University of South Carolina.

Jimmy is a dual licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer Apprentice and completed the Funeral Service Program at Piedmont Technical College graduating at the top of his class. Jimmy serves as the Administrative Manager at Heritage.
Click this link to send Jimmy an email.

William Ray Brown, Funeral Assistant

Ray Brown is a native of Fountain Inn and attended Hillcrest High School. Married to the former Barbara Shipman in 1959, Ray and Barbara have two children, a late son, Dwayne, and a daughter, Lorraine B. Greene. Ray has been a member of Fairview Street Baptist Church in Fountain Inn since he was 12 years old and he and Barbara are active members there today.

Ray entered law enforcement in 1963 and served the surrounding communities until retiring “the first time” in 1992. His career began as a Police Officer in Fountain Inn and continued in the Greenville County Sheriff’s Department. Ray studied criminal justice at Greenville Technical College and transferred to the 13th Circuit Solicitors Office as the Chief Investigator for the now Federal Judges William W. Wilkins and William B. Traxler. Ray later became Police Chief of Simpsonville and retired as Police Chief of Fountain Inn. After retiring from active duty law enforcement in 1992, Ray later re-entered the work force as a District Manager with American Security and as a Trainer for SLED, a position he filled until 2005.

Ray serves as a Funeral Assistant at Heritage.

Claude Kirby Ballew, Funeral Assistant

Kirby Ballew is a native of Simpsonville. He is married to Thelma Jones Ballew and is the father of three sons, Kee, Jeff and Scott. He is grandfather to 9 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren.

Kirby retired as the Director of the Recreation Department for the City of Simpsonville after 26 years of service, served as Traffic Manager for Her Majesty Manufacturing Company and is the Vice President of Guarantee Carpet Cleaning and Dye Systems.

He is an active member of First Baptist Church of Simpsonville and The Challengers Connect 4 Group which supports missions both locally and worldwide.

Kirby serves as a Funeral Assistant at Heritage.

Thelma A. Ballew, Funeral Assistant

A native of Greenville, Thelma moved to Simpsonville in 1954. She is married to Kirby Ballew and has 3 daughters, Reba, Kim and Yolanda, and 3 stepsons Kee, Jeff and Scott. She is a proud grandmother of six grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren. Thelma enjoys Golf and supporting her grandchildren in their sports, music and other activities.

Thelma is a member of First Baptist Church Simpsonville and the Challengers Connect 4 Group, focusing on local and foreign missions. She was a Licensed Cosmetologist and former owner of several Salons of Hair Design. She retired from Century 21 as a Licensed Realtor having served the Golden Strip for 15 years.

Thelma serves as a Lady Attendant at Heritage.

Larry Henry Couch, Funeral Assistant

Larry Couch and his wife, Linda, have lived in Simpsonville since 1971. They have two daughters; Tamara has been in Heaven since 1996 and Lisa and her family live in Greenville. They have three beautiful grandchildren.

Larry was originally from Bristol, Tennessee. He moved to Greenville to attend Bob Jones University in 1962 from which he received his BA and the Bachelor of Divinity. He is a retired LT. Col., from the Army Reserves where he spent 28 years as Chaplain. He still holds monthly services for an Army Reserve Unit. His civilian work for 41 years was Operations Manager for Factory Furniture, in Mauldin, where he retired in 2012.

Larry and Linda have been active members at Calvary Baptist Church, Simpsonville, since 1991 where he serves on the Missions Committee, is a care group leader in Sunday school, leads the prayer chain for the Golden Gems, and Zone Offense for each Church service.

Larry serves as a Funeral Assistant at Heritage.

Ronald K. Bridges, Funeral Assistant

Ronald K. Bridges was born in Lyman and grew up in Duncan. Ron met his wife to be, Joan, during his Junior year at Clemson “College”, he transferred to Wofford College and worked at Lyman Printing & Finishing until graduation. Ron entered the U. S. Army as a 2nd Lt. in April 1955 and served 2 years on active duty and 26 years reserve duty. He retired in August, 1982 as a Lt. Colonel. Ron retired in 1992 from the Insurance Industry after 35 years. He served two (3) year terms on the Greenville Auditorium Board, was President of Greenville Civitan Club 1973-74, served 14 years on City Council in Simpsonville, on the 20/20 Committee in 2000-2002, and was named the Simpsonville Chamber of Commerce’s Person of the Year in 2011. Ron is a loyal and devoted member of Holly Ridge Baptist Church where he serves as a Trustee and as the Treasurer.

Ron serves as a Funeral Assistant at Heritage.

Joan H. Bridges, Funeral Assistant

Joan H. Bridges was born and raised in Lyman. She met her future husband, Ron, in February, 1952 at Clemson “College” and they were married in October of that same year. Joan and Ron have four children, Rhonda, Stephen, Lisa and Derek; and two grandchildren, Freddy and Joshua Rader. They moved to Simpsonville in 1973 and have been involved in many civic activities in Simpsonville for many, many years. Joan retired from GTE, after a long career in 1992, works today at Cornell Sweeney’s Allstate office, and is a loyal and devoted member of Holly Ridge Baptist Church where she serves on the Fellowship and Hospitality Committee.

Joan serves as a Lady Attendant at Heritage.

Angie Richardson Saunders, Funeral Assistant

Angie Richardson, a life long resident of Simpsonville, is a graduate of Hillcrest High School and member of First Baptist Church. She has two grown children. When Angie was 12 years old she began working for her father, Dr. Jim Richardson, and continued in a medical office career, in several different capacities, for 25 years. In 1989, Angie discovered a God given talent and became a florist. She opened a floral shop in 1994. Angie enjoys volunteering and has been involved with the Heart Association since 2005 and has helped with United Way’s School Tools program.

Angie serves as a Lady Attendant at Heritage.

In Memoriam

James A. Cannon, 1929 – 2015

James Cannon died at home surrounded by his family on Sunday, March 22, 2015. He will be dearly missed by the Cannon family, by the Heritage family and by the Golden Strip communities that he genuinely loved and served for decades.

He was a life-long resident of Fountain Inn, and a third generation Funeral Director. He attended Wofford College in Spartanburg and graduated from the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science in 1949. After graduating and returning to Fountain Inn, he joined the family funeral business and served the community for more than 50 years.

Mr. Cannon was nationally recognized for his expertise in the industry and served as a member of the National Selected Morticians. He also served in numerous leadership capacities with the National Funeral Directors’ Association, the South Carolina Funeral Directors’ Association, the South Carolina Cemetery Association and the Southern Cemetery Association.

Mr. Cannon served numerous community organizations including the Fountain Inn Chamber of Commerce, City Council, the Lion’s Club and as a volunteer firefighter. He was an avid golfer, one of the original organizers of the Fox Run Country Club, a long-time member of the Greenville Country Club, the Senior Golfers of South Carolina and the Foothills Senior Golf Association.

He was a life-long member of Trinity United Methodist Church in Fountain Inn and was married to the late Sara Frances Askins. They had three children, Cathy Cannon Hubka, Carol Cannon Hopkins and James “Al” Cannon Jr.

It is the 135+ year history of family funeral service that led to the name of “Heritage” for the current organization.

Mr. Cannon was a Co-Owner and Director Emeritus of Heritage Funeral Home at the time of his death.

Dozier Brooks 1934-2014

We at Heritage lost a great friend on Saturday, August 9, 2014 when the Lord called Dozier home. He had taken a great interest in our organization and thoroughly enjoyed serving families as a Funeral Assistant. He will be dearly missed by Judy and their family, by the Heritage family and by the community, as a whole, that he so tirelessly served for decades.

We have replaced his biography with the obituary that was published at the time of his passing. It read as follows:

Dozier Brooks, 80, of Fountain Inn, husband of Judy Cook Brooks, went to be with the Lord on Saturday, August 9, 2014.

Born in Union Springs, Alabama, he was a son of the late Alf Roland Brooks and Alma Jane Brooks.

Mr. Brooks was a graduate of Greenville Technical College and worked as a design and construction manager in a Civil Engineering Firm for many years from which he retired. He served our country in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War.

Mr. Brooks served on the Greenville County Delegation Transportation Committee, the Hillcrest Hospital Advisory Council, and the Greenville Technical College, Brashier Campus, Advisory Board. He was a member of Harmony Baptist Church in Fountain Inn where he was a Deacon and former Treasurer. Mr. Brooks served eight years as a Greenville County Councilman and four years as Chairman. He served as Chairman of the Board of the Appalachian Council of Governments, Greenville County Planning Commission, and Fountain Inn City Council where he also served as Commissioner of both the Police and Fire Departments. He was a member of the Fountain Inn Chamber of Commerce.

In addition to his wife, Judy, he is survived by one son, John, and his wife Ashley, of Fountain Inn; two grandchildren, Paige and Parker Brooks; one brother, Alf Brooks Jr. and his wife, Lee, of Fountain Inn; one sister, Thelma Dodson, of Missouri; and eighteen nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by one daughter, Ashley; three brothers, and one sister.

The family received friends on Wednesday evening, August 13, 2014 from 5:30 until 7:30 PM at Heritage Funeral Home, Simpsonville.

The Funeral Service was on Thursday, August 14, 2014 at 3:00 PM at Harmony Baptist Church in Fountain Inn. Interment followed in the Church cemetery.