TRAVIS WATKINS has taken over ownership of the Watkins Brothers Funeral Homes, ensuring that the company will stay in the family. Travis’ father, Steve, and uncle, Kurt, bought their first three chapels – in Durand, Perry and Laingsburg – in 2005 from Nelson-House Funeral Homes, and they added the Bancroft chapel in 2008 and the Owosso and Corunna chapels in 2012. In addition to being a family-operated business, the Watkins Brothers Funeral Homes are known for their clean, updated facilities and for having a comfortable environment. They offer funeral, memorial and cremation services.
Travis is a 2001 graduate of Durand High School, but he did not wait to receive his diploma to begin his career in the funeral home industry. He got his start during his junior year of high school, helping out in the Durand chapel while also holding a part-time job at Hardee’s. In 2005, he left Durand to work for two years at a funeral home in Lansing, before returning to the family business in Shiawassee County.
Before taking the position in Lansing, Travis became a licensed funeral director in 2005, which followed a lengthy apprenticeship. He also earned an associate’s degree from the University of Michigan-Flint before completing his studies at the Worsham College of Mortuary Sciences in Chicago.
Travis is known among his employees as being a guy who is not above the menial jobs around the office, and he can often be found transporting cars between locations or shoveling snow at any of his six chapels when he is not in the office. He was named president on Nov. 30, 2017, so it is possible that he will delegate some of those less glamorous responsibilities in the future, but the residents of Shiawassee County can rest easy knowing that the Watkins Brothers Funeral Homes will remain a part of our community for many years to come.