History & Staff

We have years of experience caring for families, from all walks of life. Each family comes to us because they know we are leaders in our profession, dedicated to excellence in service, and have the highest integrity.

Our History

E. F. Boyd & Son, Inc., the oldest African American funeral home in the Greater Cleveland area and the oldest African American business in Cuyahoga County, opened its’ doors in 1905.  Founder, Elmer F. Boyd was born in Urbana, OH in 1878.  At the age of twenty, he moved to Cleveland.  After working several years as a waiter, Pullman porter and clerk, he entered the field of Undertaking, one of the few professions open to African Americans at the turn of the 20th century.

He opened his business following graduation from Clark's College of Embalming in Cincinnati, Ohio (now the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science).  After passing the state exam in 1904, Elmer Boyd opened an office on 2604 Central Avenue in the fall of 1905.  It was known as the E. F. Boyd Funeral Parlor.  He took on a partner, Lewis J. Dean and their initial establishment was described as "a combination funeral parlor and haberdashery".  In 1911, Dean left the business and Boyd, along with his wife, Cora, moved the business to 2544 Central Avenue.  By 1919, he moved his operation again to 2276 E. 43rd Street.

During the mid-1930's, Elmer was also joined in the business by his son, William F. Boyd. The business began to prosper because of strong relationships with the Historic St. John A. M. E. Church and Antioch Baptist Church.  Elmer and Cora purchased the present headquarters at 2165 East 89th Street in 1938.  This site had formerly been the Slaughter Brothers Funeral Home.  Along with that purchase, Boyd changed the name of his establishment to E. F. Boyd & Son Funeral Home.  Elmer Boyd died in 1944.  His wife and son, William F. Boyd, Sr. along with his daughter-in-law, Mary Webster Boyd ran the business after his death, fortifying the business and its’ presence in the community.  William F. Boyd, Sr. was elected as a member of the Cleveland School Board and served as Vice President during the 60’s.  The name E. F. Boyd & Son became synonymous with dignity, integrity and quality in funeral service.

In 1972, E. F. Boyd & Son purchased a second location in East Cleveland.  In 1987, a new wing was added to the East 89th Street building which features a spacious chapel and eight viewing rooms.  1996, a 3rd location was opened in Warrensville Heights, OH.  The East Cleveland location was recently sold as Boyd prepares for the future.

Following in their father’s footsteps, William F. Boyd, II, aka “Pepper” became licensed and joined the staff in 1964 and was later elected President and CEO in 1992.  In 1974, daughter Marcella Boyd Cox joined the staff and achieved her license.  She is currently the Chief Marketing Officer and Vice President.  And in 1982 daughter, Marina Boyd Grant joined her family and currently serves as the Chief Financial Officer.  The strong example and dedication to the community witnessed by the 2nd and 3rd generations later influenced great-granddaughters, Victoria Boyd and Lisa Boyd Taylor to join the leadership, thus marking the 4th generation of the Boyd family.  Victoria “Tori” Boyd currently serves as the Manager of the 89th Street Chapel and Lisa Taylor is Manager of our Emery Chapel.  William F. Boyd passed in December, 2015 and Mary W. Boyd passed in March of 2013.

E. F. Boyd & Son was the 1st funeral home in the Cleveland area to advertise on billboards and buses in the late 1990’s.  E. F. Boyd & Son has sponsored many bowling and baseball teams and supported a host of churches over the years.  In the late 80’s, Boyd added their own crematory, University Circle Crematory at the 89th Street location to better serve the needs of the public.  Boyd currently has a Facebook page and a grief therapy dog ‘in training’.  Our directors and staff encourage our families to be creative and memorialize their loved ones with DVD tributes, balloon and dove releases and personalized services that truly reflect the life of their loved one.  In 2016, Boyd adopted an Advisory Board, consisting of many community and business leaders as an outside resource.

The family members and staff of the E. F. Boyd & Son and Crematory remember their roots and strive to continue to serve the Greater Cleveland village with the same gracious service, traditional manner, sincerity, warmth and respect by which the company established itself in 1905.

Our Valued Staff

  • Mr. William F.  Boyd, II

    Mr. William F. Boyd, II, President and Chief Executive Officer

    William F. Boyd, II, also known as "Pepper", attended Michigan State University and later graduated from Fisk University. He is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity. He joined his father in the family business after graduating from the Pittsburgh School of Mortuary Science. He is the son of William F. and Mary W. Boyd. Pepper is an avid golfer and bowler. He is married to LaVerne Boyd, the proud father of four and grandfather of seven.

  • Mrs. Marina  Grant

    Mrs. Marina Grant, Chief Financial Officer

    Marina is daughter of William F. and Mary W. Boyd. She joined the family business over thirty years ago. She is an active member of University Circle Methodist Church and the Hospice of the Western Reserve, African American Auxiliary. She is also the mother of four. Daughter, Lisa Taylor is the Advanced Planning Manager and Emery Chapel Manager. She is the proud grandmother of thirteen.

  • Ms. Marcella M. Boyd Cox

    Ms. Marcella M. Boyd Cox, Vice President and Chief of Community Engagement

    Marcella is the youngest daughter of William F., Sr. and Mary W. Boyd and the mother of two. Marcella attended Baldwin Wallace College and Cleveland State University. She became a licensed funeral director in 1988 and was appointed in September 2017 by Gov. John Kasich to the State Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors. She is a member of the Cleveland Chapter of Girl Friends, immediate past president of the Greater Cleveland Chapter-Top Ladies of Distinction, National Coalition of 100 Black Women - GCC, 100 Black Women of Funeral Service, Buckeye State Funeral Directors, Life member National Council of Negro Women - Cuyahoga County Section, Cleveland MOTTEP Board member and the Cleveland Drifters. She loves serving the community and families.

  • Ms. Lisa Boyd  Taylor

    Ms. Lisa Boyd Taylor, Emery Chapel and Advanced Planning Manager

    Lisa is a licensed funeral director and insurance agent. She is an active member of University Circle Methodist Church and graduated from Kent State University. She enjoys bowling, reading and cooking. She is the daughter of Marina Grant and the mother of three daughters.

  • Ms. Victoria A.  Boyd

    Ms. Victoria A. Boyd, 89th Street Chapel Manager

    Victoria, affectionately known as Tori, is a graduate of Shaker Heights High School and Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science. She received her funeral director's and embalmer's licenses in 1988. Tori also loves animals. She is a member of the 4th generation of the Boyd Family and the daughter of William F. Boyd, II (LaVerne) and mother of one son, Victor.

  • Mr. Alton  Ragland Jr.

    Mr. Alton Ragland Jr., Funeral Assistant

    Alton has been a faithful member of the E. F. Boyd & Son staff since 1996. He has a resident of Warrensville Heights for over 21 years and is married to Barbara. He is the father of Valerie and Brandon, step-father of TaLona and Jarman, grandfather of 7, and great-grandfather of 1. He is a member of Liberty Hill Missionary Baptist Church. His hobbies include traveling, cruising and working in the yard.

  • Mrs. Barbara Ann Ragland

    Mrs. Barbara Ann Ragland, Administrative Assistant

    Barbara has been a faithful member of the E. F. Boyd & Son staff since 2001 and is married to Alton. She is the proud mother of TaLona and Jarman, step-mother of Valerie and Brandon, grandmother of 7 and great-grandmother of 1. Barbara is a member of Affinity Missionary Baptist Church where she serves as an usher. Her hobbies include traveling, cruising and line dancing!

  • Mr. Eric P.  Thomas

    Mr. Eric P. Thomas, Member of Care Center Team

    Eric attended E. T. I. Drafting Institute and is certified in drafting. He is a member of the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses. He spends his free time playing in a band and is an accomplished drummer. He also enjoys bowling and traveling.

  • Mr. Eric D.  Williams

    Mr. Eric D. Williams, Funeral Assistant

  • Mr. James

    Mr. James "Jim" Marshall, Funeral Director and Embalmer

    Jim Marshall is a stellar and very accomplished funeral director and embalmer. He was the first African American employed by Batesville Casket Company. He has directed services for many famous people including: the late President John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Jr., Coretta Scott King, Rosa Parks and James Brown. Jim is a former pilot and an active member of Eastview United Church of Christ. He is married to wife, Minnie, the father of two daughters and a grandfather.

  • Mr. Jerome  Sledge

    Mr. Jerome Sledge, Funeral Assistant

    Jerome Sledge, also known as J'Rome, has been a faithful member of the Boyd staff for over 30 years. He is a member of the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses. J'Rome loves to travel and has been abroad many times. J'Rome is married and the father of two.

  • Mr. Juan C.  Ferebee

    Mr. Juan C. Ferebee, Manager of The Care Center

    Juan has been a treasured member of the Boyd Family Staff for over 30 years. He graduated from Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science. He is a lifelong member of Everlasting Baptist Church. Juan is known for being an impeccable dresser and has a loving and compassionate spirit. He's also a sports enthusiast. Juan was recently inducted into the distinguished 100 Black Men of Greater Cleveland. He is married and the father of 2.

  • Mr. Kenneth K.  Kelly

    Mr. Kenneth K. Kelly, Funeral Assistant

    Ken Kelly was a dedicated and faithful member of the Boyd staff family for over 35 years. He graduated from Bowling Green State University and was a health and physical education teacher for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District for many years. Kelly was a member of his local street club and enjoys landscaping, gardening, restoring furniture and volunteering at the Salvation Army. He is survived by his wife of 35 years, Mary Boone Kelly and one daughter, Malita Kelly Reese (Brandon). Kelly passed away suddenly on March 9, 2018. He will be sorely missed.

  • Mr. Luther  Solomon

    Mr. Luther Solomon, Supervisor

    Luther Solomon has been a faithful employee for over 50 years. He is a member of Olivet Institutional Baptist Church. He is married to Gwen and a father and grandfather.

  • Ms. Mary J.  Smith

    Ms. Mary J. Smith, Advanced Planning Counselor

    Mary earned a B.A. in Communications from John Carroll University, is a licensed insurance agent and has also earned a certificate in grief ministry. She enjoys tutoring students grades 1-12, is a Life Member of the NAACP and a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. She is a long time member of Olivet Institutional Baptist Church where she serves as the church clerk. She also enjoys reading, is a member of the MCW Book Club, the mother of one son and a resident of Mayfield Heights.

  • Ms. Tessa  Tiggs

    Ms. Tessa Tiggs, Funeral Director and Embalmer

  • Mr. Roscoe  Simmons

    Mr. Roscoe Simmons, Funeral Assistant

    Roscoe, AKA Joe, Simmons has been a dedicated member of the Boyd team for many years. He is a very active member of the Masonic Lodge and is a 33 Degree Mason and proudly served his country in the Army Reserves. His hobbies include playing chess, attending Masonic events and fishing. He is also a member of Mt. Zion of Oakwood Church and the proud father of Roscoe III, Jarah and Joseph.

  • Ms. Rubye L.  Jones

    Ms. Rubye L. Jones, Retired Insurance Specialist and Funeral Assistant

    Rubye is an active member of Elizabeth Baptist Church. She served many years as the Insurance Specialist before she retired. Even though she is not working everyday, she still works on behalf of E. F. Boyd & Son! And we love her for it!

  • Mrs. Stephanie  Williams

    Mrs. Stephanie Williams, Funeral Assistant and Receptionist

    Stephanie has been a faithful employee of E. F. Boyd & Son for many years. She attended Cuyahoga Community College and received a nursing certificate. She is an Eastern Star, member of Bethel Chapter 58 and the Laveda Circle. She loves to spend her free time shopping and looking like a model! She has a winning smile and an inspirational word for everyone and loves to serve the public! She is the proud mother of one son, Ray and grandmother of one granddaughter, Skyler. Stephanie is an active and faithful member of Mt. Sinai Baptist Church.

  • Ms. Tara Diane Simpson

    Ms. Tara Diane Simpson, Asst. Manager (Emery location) and Funeral Director

    Tara is the Assistant Manager of the Emery location. She is a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer and a graduate of Warrensville Heights High School, the University of Cincinnati and Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science. She is active in the Black Women's Political Action Committee, the Northeast Ohio African American Library and Cultural Center Committee and the Cleveland African American Funeral Directors and Embalmers Association (CAAFDEA). She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Order of the Eastern Star, Eta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. and the Cleveland Chapter of The Drifters, Inc. She received the "Spotlight on Young, Gifted and Black" award for outstanding achievements in NE Ohio and is a certified travel agent. She is also a member of Bethany Christian Church where she serves on the Scholarship and Leadership committees and Mentor with the Youth Ministry. Her hobbies are shopping, modeling, reading, line dancing and traveling.

  • Rev. Theodore

    Rev. Theodore "Ted" Means, Funeral Assistant

  • Ms. Timeka Lynn Woods

    Ms. Timeka Lynn Woods, Funeral Director and Embalmer

    Timeka attended CWRU for 2 years and completed her AAS and BMS at Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science. She is also a licensed insurance agent and Division Leader of Primerica Financial Services. She is an active member of Avon Avenue Baptist Church. A resident of Warrensville Heights and a graduate of Warrensville Heights High School, she is the mother of Tylen, Taylen and Timeka Erin.

  • Mr. Turner  Williams

    Mr. Turner Williams, Funeral Assistant

  • Mr. Lonnie D. Sloan

    Mr. Lonnie D. Sloan, Controller

    Lonnie D. Sloan joined the Boyd Family Staff in April 2018. He is a native Clevelander, a certified CPA and graduate of Case Western Reserve University's, Weatherhead School of Management. He has a very strong and abiding faith in Christ and is a member of the The Word Church. In his free time, Lonnie enjoys golfing and reading. He is married to Patrice and the proud father of twins Derek and Selena, Loni Ann and Andrew and grandfather of Brooklyn.

  • Mr. Tyrome  Hinson

    Mr. Tyrome Hinson, Funeral Assistant & Certified Crematory Operator

    Tyrome has been a wonderful addition to the Boyd Staff family for many years. He serves families with patience and compassion. His hobbies include watching basketball, football, boxing and playing pool. He is the proud father of 3 daughters and one son.

  • Mr. Antuan Paci

    Mr. Antuan Paci, Funeral Assistant

  • Mr. Mark Mainor

    Mr. Mark Mainor, Funeral Assistant

    Mark is a member of Olivet Institutional Baptist Church where he serves as a Deacon.

  • Mr. Roderick Bacon

    Mr. Roderick Bacon, Funeral Assistant

    Rod has been a faithful member of the Boyd Family Staff for many years. He attends Southeast Seventh Day Adventist Church. Before coming at E. F. Boyd & Son, Rod worked as a mental health counselor at Beechbrook. He loves to play tennis, bowl, basketball and is a professional photographer. Rod is married and the father of one.

  • Ms. Jonell Williamson

    Ms. Jonell Williamson, Vital Records Specialist

    Jonell attended Tri-C and PTC School of Nursing. She is a member of House of Refuge Baptist Church where she is a member of the choir. She resides in Euclid, OH, and enjoys cooking, singing and dancing and is the mother of two.

  • Mrs. Audrey Thompson

    Mrs. Audrey Thompson, Receptionist and Insurance Administrator

    Audrey is a graduate of Kent State University. She spends her time free volunteering with ICONS, supporting youth and the communities of Cleveland. She is a member of Fellowship Church of God. Her hobbies include scrapbooking, crafts and floral design. She is married to Brooke H. Thompson.

  • Rev. W. Gerard James

    Rev. W. Gerard James, Funeral Assistant

  • Mr. Antonio

    Mr. Antonio "Tony" Ezell, Maintenance Assistant

    Tony is an invaluable member of the Boyd staff family. He has many skills from carpentry to computer tech and can do just about anything that is asked of him. He has a cheerful disposition and is always ready to go the extra mile.