Christie’s Funeral Home & Crematorium is the oldest continuous business in Yorkton, but is also one of the most modern. It has continued to make investments in new and improved facilities in order to exceed customer expectations.
In 1882 Mr. & Mrs. J. W. Christie, together with their family settled in Yorkton, just ten years after the arrival of the first settlers. A carpenter by trade, Mr. Christie began contracting and many of Yorkton’s early homes and businesses were built by him. Yorkton’s first Cottage Hospital, The Collacott Block, The Dunlop Block, and Yorkton Flour Mill were built under his supervision. Mr. Christie built hand made caskets until 1897 and was Yorkton’s first licensed undertaker. The original Funeral Home established in 1894 and located at 22 -5th Ave North in Yorkton is where these caskets were built and later became a fully functioning funeral home. Mr. Christie personally conducted arrangements for most funerals in Yorkton before his retirement in 1930. J.W. Christie passed away on August 6th, 1938 and the business was succeeded by son, Charlie Christie.
Following Charlie’s passing a short while after his father, Christie’s Funeral Home was sold to George H. Gunn and John Chambers in 1959 and retained the original owners name. In 1973, John McPake purchased Christie’s Funeral Home and changed the name of Christie’s Funeral Home to Christie-McPake Funeral Home. John sold the business to Allan and Janet Hill in 1979. The Hill’s named the funeral home Christie-Hill Funeral Chapel and rebuilt to its present location on 121 Palliser Way. Due to increasing demand, they chose to include an on site crematorium in the expansion, to better serve their clients thus becoming Christie-Hill Funeral Chapel & Crematorium. Allan owned Christie-Hill for 27 years before selling to longtime employees, Vern & Kathy Novak. Vern & Kathy operated the funeral home until December 1, 2017 when they passed it on to Joe and Kimberly Coffey.
Vern & Kathy felt it was only right to return the funeral home to the original name of Christie’s Funeral Home because after 113 years of continuous business, both were proud and honored to be part of Yorkton’s original heritage. They have also kept this establishment an independently owned funeral home and have taken seriously the logo of “A Tradition of Trust.”
Presently employed at Christie’s Funeral Home is Licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer/Prepaid Funeral Salesperson, Greg Schick, originally of the Bangor district, who lives in Yorkton along with his wife, Myrna and daughter, Larissa. Also an employee of the funeral home is Michelle Bell (nee Grunert). As a high school student, Michelle worked in the funeral home and left to persue her education and career as a Funeral Directror and Embalmer in Alberta and British Columbia. Michelle returned to the Yorkton District and married Craig Bell. They have two beautiful daughters, Aimee and Kate.
Marv Breitkreuz together with his wife, Laurie, make their home in Springside. Marv, who works in just about every capacity in the funeral home, recently sold his company, "Marv’s Autobody" in Springside and now enjoys working along side us as one of the team. We are also proud to have Allan and Jeanette Wheeler of the Yorkton district working as funeral attendants as well.
Twenty-three years ago Vern and Kathy Novak moved from Regina to Yorkton to start a new life with Vern obtaining employment at the old Christie’s building on 5th Avenue. When he started, he learned a lot from Ted Anderson who previously was employed by Christie’s Funeral Home right from the era of Chambers and Gunn until the time of Christie-Hill Funeral Chapel. The years of Allan Hill, Ted Anderson and Vern Novak were great times but a Funeral Director’s life was so different from the life he knew being employed as an accountant for Remco Memorials in Regina. In 1996, Vern became fully licensed as an embalmer and funeral director. In 1997, Kathy joined the staff as office administrator, and soon came to realize that Yorkton was to become our home where we have raised our children, Kyle and Shelby. Allan & Janet Hill became like surrogate parents in early years and remain life long friends.
Christie's Funeral Home & Crematorium continues to expand with the needs of families as do most funeral homes and in the fall of 2006, Kathy completed the training required to become a Certified Funeral Celebrant. A Celebrant can meet the needs of families not necessarily affiliated with a church. Christie's Funeral Home is also very proud of our newest addition the George Gunn Reception Centre where families can meet for gatherings and funeral receptions with a comfortable seating capacity of 85 - 100. Vern and Kathy chose George Gunn as the namesake because we are continuously reminded of the high standards and ethics he possessed. As Vern says, "George Gunn truly cared for the well being of each family he served and had a strong commitment to community, I hope to follow in his foot steps.” The George Gunn Reception Centre is a catered facility offering a variety of catering options.
Together with their staff, Kathy and Vern are honoured to serve Yorkton and area and are extremely proud of our heritage as Christie’s Funeral Home. After years of grateful service, Vern and Kathy are now part of Christie's heritage. Their gratitude to the community for the trust and support given is now part of a 125 year history.
In 2017, after many years of service to the Yorkton community, Vern and Kathy retired, selling Christie's to Joe and Kimberly Coffey of Roblin, MB. With over 20 years in funeral services, and a lifetime spent locally, Joe and Kimberly plan to continue to provide the great service you associate with Christie's and continue to earn your trust.
A Tradition of Trust since 1893 - Celebrating Life & Preserving Memories, One Family at a Time.