Our Officers

Gary M. Freytag

Gary FreytagGary M. Freytag, President and Chief Executive Officer of Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum, joined the organization in 2003.

Mr. Freytag holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Dartmouth and a Master of Business Administration with distinction from Harvard. He joined the Spring Grove Family after previously serving as President of Information Alternatives, a Cincinnati based technology consulting company where he led efforts to expand its customer base into new markets including distribution, government and wireless.

Prior to that, Mr. Freytag served as Treasurer of Eagle-Picher, a diversified manufacturing company with nearly one billion dollars in worldwide revenue. There he was responsible for managing their debt reduction strategy and re-introducing them to Wall Street. He also spent 10 years in manufacturing as President of Performance Manufacturing, a Cincinnati-based company that produced industrial products. His other business experience includes management consulting and venture capital.

David P. Kelley

David KelleyDavid P. Kelley, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum, joined the organization in 2011.

Mr. Kelley holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting and a Master of Business Administration from Michigan State University and is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). He joined the Spring Grove Family after serving as Vice President/Finance of Eagle-Picher Corporation’s largest manufacturing division and Vice President/Chief Financial Officer of General Products Corporation, both of which were headquartered in Michigan. Mr. Kelley has also served in the United States Department of Treasury audit function.

He has actively participated on city municipal planning commissions and volunteered time for various charitable organizations, the Rotary Club, and is an officer in the Knights of Columbus. 

Gerald D. Wantz

Jerry WantzGerald D. Wantz, Vice President of Operations and Chief Operations Officer, joined the Spring Grove organization in October 2012.  Prior to joining the Spring Grove Family, Mr. Wantz held the position of President and CEO at The Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland, OH.  Mr. Wantz began his long career in the cemetery industry in 1974 as a summer laborer at Hill Grove Cemetery in his hometown of Miamisburg, Ohio. 

Mr. Wantz has attended Wright State University and Ohio State University.  He is Past President of the Greater Cleveland Association of Cemetery Superintendents and Officials and the Ohio Association of Cemetery Superintendents and Officials. He holds the International Cemetery, Cremation, and Funeral Association (ICCFA) industry designation of Certified Cemetery Executive (CCE).   

Mr. Wantz and his wife of 36 years, Cheryl, are proud parents to two children, and they are delighted to be first-time grandparents to a beautiful granddaughter born July 4, 2012.   

 

Michael H. Burke

Mike BurkeMichael H. Burke, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, joined the Spring Grove organization in June 2013. With over 30 years of executive level experience in Cemetery and Funeral operations, Mr. Burke has led some of the largest and most respected firms in the United States, including The Palm Mortuary Group, Las Vegas, NV, Memorial Park of Memphis, TN, and Woodlawn Cemetery and Funeral Home Group in Orlando, FL. Mr. Burke will be leading Spring Groves Family Service and Advance Planning Agency Teams along with Marketing responsibilities.

Recently, Michael was awarded Honorary Status from the University of Memphis and The International Cemetery, Cremation and Funeral Association for his 25 years of student development while serving as Dean of The Land Management College and ultimately elected to The Chancellor governing 7 Colleges of The I.C.C.F. A. University for 6 years.  He attended Seminole State College and Valencia College in Florida with studies in Landscape Design and Business Management. Mr. Burke has served on State Cemetery Associations in FL, TN, KY, LA, GA and AL in disciplines covering Legislation, Ethics Committees and Cemetery Compliance standards.

Being indirectly involved with many staff members over the years at Spring Grove and Spring Grove Funeral Homes, Michael is very proud to have finally have landed at the premier Cemetery and Funeral Organization in The Unites States. Spring Grove has always held a very special place in Michael’s heart .

In his time away from work, Michael and his wife Brenda enjoy fishing, reading, traveling and spending time with their Shetland Sheep Dog.

 

Obituaries

Elizabeth "Beth" Ann Conrad, 61
Born: Sunday, February 19, 1956
Died: Thursday, December 14, 2017

Ruth Barker, 75
Born: Sunday, December 21, 1941
Died: Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Arthur Shilt, 76
Born: Tuesday, April 15, 1941
Died: Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Karl Simmang, 80
Born: Saturday, October 16, 1937
Died: Sunday, December 10, 2017

Viola "Vicky" M. Kennedy, 86
Born: Monday, June 01, 1931
Died: Friday, December 08, 2017

Upcoming Events

Jan 16Grief to Peace / Spring Grove
Jan 23Grief to Peace / Tri County
Jan 27Winter Tree ID
Feb 044th Annual Chocolate In the Chapel
Feb 20Grief to Peace / Spring Grove
Feb 27Grief to Peace / Tri County
Mar 03 - Mar 03Owl Prowl
Mar 20Grief to Peace / Spring Grove
Mar 27Grief to Peace / Tri County
Apr 01Easter Sunrise Service / Spring Grove