We have years of experience caring for families from all walks of life, cultures and faiths. Our unsurpassed staff and our family provide kind, caring, professional service. Each family comes to us because they know we are leaders in our profession who are dedicated to excellence in service, adhere to the highest funeral industry standards, and have exceptional integrity. We consistently earn phenomenally high customer satisfaction survey results.
Our licensed, professional staff is here for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Please call 850-244-5163 anytime. We will even come to you to make arrangements in the comfort of your home.
Prompt, compassionate service is always just a phone call away, where and when you need it.
Managing Partner, Licensed Funeral Director, Embalmer. Crematory Certified.Originally from McAllen, Texas and bilingual, James always knew he wanted to be a funeral director and embalmer. He is a graduate of Commonwealth College of Mortuary Science, Houston, Texas and has been a Licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer since 1975. Schooled in staff management, leadership, human resources and civic leadership, James is a 32nd Degree Mason, is a member of the Scottish Rite and the Fort Walton Beach Rotary Club International, sits on the Board of Directors of the Emerald Coast Crime Stoppers. He is a member of First Baptist Church.
Funeral Director/EmbalmerA Licensed Funeral Director/Embalmer and a 1994 graduate of Bishop State College in Mobile, Alabama, Dwight has been serving the community since graduating at the following locations: McLaughlin Mortuary, the former Little Chapel, Twin Cities, Niceville, and Emerald Coast. He served a Church Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and is retired from the United States Air Force for 24 years of active duty.
Funeral Director/ Embalmer
Christine is a long time resident of Okaloosa County. She is a graduate of Jefferson State Community College in Birmingham, Alabama where she received her Associate’s Degree in Mortuary Science. She has a passion for creating a personalized experience for families honoring their loved ones in unique ways. Christine and her husband, Chris, have two children and reside in Fort Walton Beach. When not working, she enjoys deep sea fishing, concerts and travelling.
Jeffrey was born and raised in Carrollton, Georgia. He graduated from Jefferson State Community College in Birmingham, Alabama with his Associate’s degree in Funeral Science. Jeffrey started in the funeral business in 1997 in Carrollton, Georgia and moved to Milton, Florida in 2007. Jeffrey enjoys the outdoors including camping and long walks on the beach. His favorite pastime activity is playing the piano. Jeffrey has been in the business for over 20 years and looks forward to another 20 years with McLaughlin Mortuary.
Born in neighboring Santa Rosa County, Phillip possesses the hospitable nature characteristic of people in the South. He has a passion for helping people after the passing of their loved ones. Phillip earned his Bachelor’s Degree from Troy University and went on to earn his Applied Science Degree in Funeral Science Education at Georgia’s Ogeechee Technical College. Prior to joining the professional staff at Emerald Coast Funeral Home, he served as a funeral director at Atlanta’s historic H.M. Patterson & Son Funeral Directors. Phillip currently holds funeral director and embalmer licenses in both Florida and Georgia.
Apprentice Funeral Director/Embalmer
After living in Oklahoma and Texas for most of her life, Brandy moved to Florida in February of 2021. She first felt called to serve grieving families as a young teenager while watching her mother work at a funeral home as an Office Manager. She earned an Associate degree in Mortuary Science from Dallas Institute of Funeral Services and is currently doing her apprenticeship to attain her funeral director and embalmer licenses. Brandy lives in Baker with her husband and their 3 children. She is committed to compassionately caring for each family while celebrating each life lived with dignity and honor.
Lisa Coll was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She graduated from Indiana University with a Bachelor of Science degree. She has two children and five grandchildren.
Gary is a lifelong resident of Ft. Walton Beach, FL. Gary was in the insurance and auto business since 1974. After retiring, Gary joined our team as a funeral assistant. Gary has raised four children and has seven grandchildren. He and his wife, Gloria reside in Ft. Walton Beach.
Gerling is originally from Charleston, West Virginia. He retired from the U.S. Navy in 2005 after 20 years of service. Gerling has two children, Jakob and Jadyn. He resides in Fort Walton Beach, Florida with his cat, Sebastian.
Celebrant/Funeral AssistantAllan "Al" Stearns joined the staff in 2011. Al is a retired Air Force officer and has resided in the local area since 1978.
Funeral AssistantDiane is a full-time Floral Designer and works part-time as an Ambassador at McLaughlin Mortuary. In 2000, Diane moved from St. Louis, Missouri to the Fort Walton Beach area to fulfill a lifetime dream of living at the beach.
Ted Stookey is from St. Louis, Missouri, where he worked many years in the Funeral Industry and owned his own crematory (Stookey Pet Cremation Service). He moved to Florida in March of 2018 and is the proud father of 2 children. He began working at Emerald Coast Funeral Home as an Ambassador in January of 2019. Soon after, he attended classes and became certified as a Crematory Operator here in Florida, through the Matthews Cremation Program. He is now a Crematory Operator at Okaloosa Crematory located at McLaughlin Mortuary.
Crematory OperatorLarry H. Rogers moved from his hometown in Birmingham, Alabama to the Fort Walton Beach area in 1996. After four years of working as an Ambassador assisting with funerals and visitations at Emerald Coast Funeral Home, he became the Crematory Operator at Okaloosa Crematory located at McLaughlin Mortuary. He attended class and was certified as a crematory operator in April 2008 through the Matthews Cremation program in Apopka, Florida. Larry lives in southwest Okaloosa County.
Ambassador/Grief SupportPat hosts two bereavement groups; this warm and caring service is open to anyone, and there is never any charge.