Learn our story, from the beginning and into the future.
Ever since we opened our gates we have approached life (and death) differently. While some just see the end of a loved one’s life as a time for grief and mourning, we prefer to think of it as a time for reflection, appreciation and even celebration. This is evident in everything we do, from the way we conduct our services to the amenities we choose to offer. We are a close knit community dedicated to honoring, sharing and preserving the amazing and inspirational stories that are life.
In a nutshell? Experience, professionalism, compassion, and empathy.
We've learned a lot over many years. Like how to present options without overwhelming. And how to meet the needs of many caring parties. People come to us in difficult times, and we respond kindness, calmness and expertise. Our goal is to create a beautiful occasion and make you feel welcome, always. We spend our days planning with families. We stay up to date with industry developments. And we make hard times a little easier.
Learn the legacy.
George Thacker establishes Sarasota's first funeral home
Funeral Home began operating out of our main location, 40 N. Orange Ave.
Brothers George and John (Jack) Toale purchased the funeral home
The Toale Family
Toale Brothers Funeral Home is proud to have served Sarasota and its citizens for three generations. Our story begins in 1912 when Mr. George Thacker established Sarasota's first funeral home. Mr. F. W. VanGilder eventually joined Mr. Thacker and the funeral home became known as Thacker VanGilder Funeral Home. The Funeral Home began operating out of our main location, 40 N. Orange Ave, in 1925. The Funeral Home was purchased by the Toale Family in 1948. Brothers George E. Toale and John (Jack) P. Toale along with their sister Catherine Toale Christian operated the family business. George and Jack Toale earned their degrees from the Cincinnati School of Embalming and Catherine was the first female licensed Embalmer in the State of Florida. George and Jack Toale soon expanded the funeral home to include two locations in Bradenton and three in Sarasota. Under the
leadership of the second generation, including David and Curt Toale, the
funeral home flourished, strengthening into what it is today. It is notable that Kathleen Toale (David), was instrumental in establishing the Pre- Need program for Toale Brothers, which allows for consumers to plan ahead for a loved one or themselves. The Pre-Need program is still in operation today and provides a great sense of comfort to those families wishing to pre-plan final arrangements. Syndi Toale (Curt) has been involved in many community events and has helped with administrative duties of the Funeral Home. The third
generation is comprised of Curt’s two daughters, Tiffany and Stephanie. The sisters are proud
to carry on the locally owned and operated family business and are happy to
have such a knowledgeable and dedicated staff that has made Toale Brothers
thrive over the years. There are currently four Toale Brothers locations to best serve the families in our community; Bradenton Chapel, Colonial Chapel, Gulf Gate Chapel, and our newest location, Ewing Chapel on Venice Island. The Toale family is thankful to be serving your family in the community they know and love.
Who We Are
Meet our staff. Members of the local community make everything that happens possible.
Together, we make this place amazing.
President & Owner
Curt is a native of Sarasota. His father, George Toale, is one of the original Toale Brothers and Curt has been a part of the family business since 1968. After graduating from Sarasota High School, Curt attended Manatee Community College and then moved on to Miami where he earned his Mortuary of Science Degree. Curt is a licensed Embalmer and Funeral Director and specializes in assisting our families with any and all final arrangements. Curt values his time serving the community. He is a past president of the Rotary Club of Sarasota Bay, a past Potente at the Sahib Shrine, a past member of the Salvation Army Advisory Board and has served on the board of the Florida Funeral Directors Association. Curt also enjoys playing golf and tennis, biking, walking and traveling.
Tiffany Toale Holsbeke
Tiffany Toale Holsbeke was born and raised in Sarasota and is one of the grandchildren of the original Toale Brothers. After graduating from Sarasota High School, she attended the University of South Florida, where she played soccer for the college and received a bachelors in Civil Engineering. She worked for many years in the hospitality industry and then attended St. Petersburg College for Funeral Arts. She is a licensed Funeral Director and in her free time she loves spending time with her family, running, and sailing.
Stephanie Toale Lynch
Stephanie Toale Lynch is a native to Sarasota and a grandchild of one of the original Toale Brothers. She graduated from Sarasota High and then attended Florida State University where she received her bachelors degree in Multinational Business Operations and masters in Marketing Communications. She worked several years for an international company as an accounts manager and executive assistant. She attended St. Petersburg College for Funeral Arts and is a licensed Funeral Director. In her spare time Stephanie enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, and cooking.
Matt Lynch is a native to Florida, growing up in Ft. Pierce where he attended John Carroll High School. He went on to attend and play baseball for Florida State University. After receiving a bachelors degrees in Risk Management/Insurance, Matt continued his career in baseball until 2006 and then worked in the banking industry until starting at Toale Brothers. Matt has been at Toale Brothers since 2018 and is a licensed funeral director. He spends his free time watching sports and playing golf.
Myron is from Mt. Lake, Minnesota. After graduating high school, he attended Hesston College in Hesston, Kansas where he earned his associates degree with a pre-medical emphasis. Myron then moved to Florida where he graduated from the University of South Florida College of Business Administration with a Bachelor of Science degree. Myron majored in Accounting and Management. He has been an asset to the Toale Brothers team since 1979. Myron has served as president of his neighborhood associations and helped in local affairs groups. He enjoys spending time with his wife, Terri, playing tennis, remodeling homes and fishing.
George B. Kalbfleisch
Eugene 'Geno' Mould
Geno is a native of Ohio. He was born in Cleveland and graduated from Bedford High School in 1982. He then attended Adrian College in Michigan where he enjoyed playing football for four years. Geno graduated from the Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science and moved to Florida in 1986. He subsequently earned his Embalmer and Funeral Director licenses and has been serving families in Manatee and Sarasota Counties since 1987. Geno joined the Toale Brothers family in April, 2005. Geno is a valued member of our team. When he is not assisting families in our community, Geno enjoys hunting, exercising and spending time with his grandsons.
Travis is a native of Savannah, Georgia. He graduated from Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service in Atlanta, Georgia. Travis has worked in funeral service since 1989 and is a licensed Embalmer and Funeral Director in Florida and Georgia. When he is not assisting families in our community, Travis enjoys spending time with his friends and family, collecting antiques and going on cruises.
Ernest 'Skip' Cowan III
Skip is a native of Florida and attended Venice High School, Class of 1976. He then moved to Kentucky where he attended the Kentucky School of Mortuary Science. He graduated in 1980 and, subsequently, earned his Embalmer and Funeral Director licenses in Kentucky and Florida. Skip began working for Toale Brothers Funeral Home in 1977 before returning to Kentucky in 1988. After 11 years, Skip once again returned to Florida where he continued his work in the funeral service industry, re-joining the Toale Brothers team in 2014. Skip is a valued member of our staff. Skip is a member of the Sarasota Masonic Lodge and a member of the Sons of the American Legion, Post 159 in Venice. He lives in Venice with his lovely wife, Liz.
Jeff is a native of New Castle, PA and has lived in Florida since 1972. He graduated from Miami-Dade Community College with a degree in Mortuary Science and has been a licensed Embalmer since 1978. Jeff earned his Funeral Director's license in 1979. He has been a valuable member of the Toale Brothers team since 2007, however, he has been employed as a Funeral Director and Manager in several area funeral homes, including Toale Brothers, in the past. Jeff has many years experience in assisting grieving families in our community. Community involvement is important to Jeff, as well. He has been a member of Lions Club, served as President of the Florida Funeral Directors Association and was Chairman for the International Order of the Golden Rule. Jeff enjoys spending time with his grandchildren, playing golf and target shooting.
Tony was born and raised in Somerville, New Jersey, and moved to Hollywood, Florida in 1972. He earned an Associates degree in Funeral Service from Miami-Dade Community College in Miami, a Bachelor of Business Administration from Campbell University in North Carolina, a Master of Divinity from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, and a Doctor of Theology from Slidell Baptist Seminary in Louisiana. He has been in funeral services for nearly 40 years, and in Pastoral Ministry for 25 years. Tony lives in Englewood with his beautiful wife Donna and their pets. When he is not serving families in some capacity, Tony enjoys preaching and teaching, riding and fettling British motorcycles and shooting.
Tabitha Garcia Cruz
Tabitha is a graduate of Stony Brook University and the American Academy McAllister Institute of Funeral Service. Formerly of New York, Tabitha left her career in Emergency Medical Services to pursue funeral directing and has been licensed in the state of Florida since 2013. She is a licensed funeral director, embalmer, and certified crematory operator, and is involved with the Florida Emergency Mortuary Response System (FEMORS).
Administrator / Funeral Director
Marybeth was raised in Franklin, New Hampshire. She attended Keene State College where she earned her Bachelor of the Arts degree in Communications in 2003. Following graduation, Marybeth assisted at her family's funeral homes in New Hampshire for several years before moving to Florida and joining the Toale Brothers team. Marybeth is a licensed Funeral Director and also works in our front office, assisting our families with dignity and respect daily. In her free time, Marybeth enjoys spending time with friends and family and watching New England sporting events.
Rabbi Howard A Simon
Serving Jewish Needs
Howard A. Simon was ordained as a rabbi at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, Ohio. Prior to assuming leadership of Sarasota’s Temple Emanu-El Congregation , he had served congregations in Baltimore, MD; Atlantic City, NJ; Cincinnati, OH and Knoxville, TN.
Rabbi Simon is Vice President of the Sarasota Ministerial Association, and writes a monthly column for The Jewish News sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Sarasota/Manatee. He was a founder and president of Knoxville’s Interfaith Health Clinic, served a number of years on the board of the Jewish Federation, led three Interfaith Missions to Israel sponsored by the Jewish Federation, and was the founding Chairman of the Esther and Robert Heller Israel Advisory Initiative of the Jewish Federation.
Rabbi Simon is the author of two books of poetry, Back From the Abyss: Thoughts About Life, and Death and Memories, So Many, So Precious. He recently published his first novel, Atlantic City: Winners and Losers.
He and his wife, Rona, share their lives with six children and eight grandchildren.
Claire is a native of Milan, Tennessee. She earned a Bachelor of the Arts degree in Business Administration from USC. After moving to Florida, Claire received her Preneed License with the State of Florida Department of Financial Services. She has been a valued employee of Toale Brothers since 1998. Claire specializes in assisting families who are interested pre-planning their final arrangements. She is a wealth of knowledge and is always happy to help.
June moved to Sarasota in 1980 from Indiana. She went to Manatee Community College for Interior Design and enjoyed many years of assisting families with their homes. After being introduced to the funeral and cemetery business, she realized that was her true calling. She acquired her Preneed License with the State of Florida Department of Financial Services in 1999. After much training, conventions and seminars on the profession, she has been helping families since then with their pre-planning for the future.
Lorie moved to Sarasota in 1978 from Michigan. She graduated from Sarasota High school, she took small business at Sarasota County Technical Institute (SCTI). She has worked many years in the hospitality industry. Lorie has been a part of many different organizations throughout Sarasota over the years. Lorie received her Preneed License with the State of Florida Department of Financial Services and is always happy to help with a smile for Preneed Services.
Jennifer is born and raised in Sarasota, Florida. She graduated from Sarasota High School then went on to earn her Accounting Certificate from Sarasota County Technical Institute. She has run many departments for large companies in the Sarasota area for 20 years. She has also volunteered either Bartending or Serving food at various community events (Suncoast Offshore & Thunder by the Bay) for 14 years. She is also an active board member for The American Legion Auxiliary Unit 266 as the 2nd Vice President.
Family Care Specialist
Rosemary is a native of upstate New York. She was born in Syracuse, NY and graduated from Morrisville-Eaton High School 1963. She spent time in the medical field and then In 1982 moved to Sarasota, FL. When first in Florida she was employed as manager of Condo complexes before joining Toale Brothers in 1988. After working many different positions in the offices she finds herself now helping our families with choosing a headstone for their loved ones. Rosemary has toured Matthews Bronze manufacturing plant in Pennsylvania and is able to explain the quality of detail that goes into the making of the headstones. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her family and many great grandchildren when not traveling.
PJ is a native of Ohio, born in Bucyrus and then moving to Florida in 1959. She graduated from Manatee High School in 1962 and then attended Manatee Junior College. PJ worked at Property Accounting Management Inc. for 12 years as an Accounting Supervisor, where supervised over 50 condos, and did the bookkeeping and payroll for over 550 employees. PJ came to Toale Brother in 1988. She was in charge of accounts receivable and payables and processing insurance policies, which at the time was all done by typewriters, no computers. Today PJ still is inputting records for Toale brother. She is a member of the Moose Lodge in Sarasota and in her free time she enjoys spending time with her great grandchildren and recusing animals.
Leann was born and raised in Bradenton, Florida and graduated from Southeast High School in Bradenton. She has worked in the front office of Toale Brothers for 12 years, but has been associated with Toale Brothers since she was born. Leann's father Thomas Simpkins was a funeral director with Toale Brothers for 35 years before retiring in 2005 and two of her older brother's worked for Toale Brothers when they were in high school. In her spare time, Leann enjoys spending time with her husband, John, and her children, Kody and Madison.
Explore Our Locations
See where we are and find the place that best meet your needs.