Irby Funeral Homes Have New Owner

Thursday, August 4, 2016
Irby Funeral Home owner Billy Curl (right) with funeral directors Andrew Cavaness, Cheri Boyd.(TD photo)

The new owner of Irby Funeral Home plans to emphasize personal service and a sense of community.

Billy Curl, who also owns Cobb Funeral Home in Blytheville, began operation July 1 at Irby's three locations in Rector, Piggott and Marmaduke.

"We are very family-oriented," Curl said. "We are now locally-owned and I plan to be on-site here at least two to three days a week."

The new owner plans major improvements to the Marmaduke and Piggott locations. First on the agenda will be paving the parking lot at Marmaduke and having the office open 8 to 5 Monday through Friday. David Floyd serves as funeral director in Marmaduke.

Curl said major renovations will be scheduled later this year at the Piggott location.

Andrew Cavaness is the general manager/funeral director for the firm, with his main office in Rector. Cheri Boyd serves as office manager/funeral director in Rector.

"I really like the small town atmosphere of Rector, Piggott and Marmaduke," Curl said. A native of Newport, he is a retired Army helicopter pilot, having spent 22 years in the military. Curl was in the first wave of pilots who entered the Iraqi war zone in 2003. He spent his last 10 years in the military as a full-time helicopter instructor.

A licensed funeral director since 1991, he purchased Cobb Funeral Home in 2012. Curl spent some time traveling back and forth from his home in Tupelo, Miss., before eventually moving to Blytheville. He and his wife have four children.

Curl said among his goals are providing "trustworthy and compassionate" service and affordable pricing.

"We are immediately passing along savings in the range of 10 to 15 percent to families in the area," he said. "We are looking to provide a price situation to fit all needs."

Curl plans to be active in the local communities and said he is always available for contact or consultation with families in need of service.

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