Industry News

SCI Buys Nelsen Funeral Homes and the Cremation Society of Virginia

Service Corporation International announced in a news release Nov. 27 that it has acquired the Nelsen Funeral Homes located in Richmond and Ashland, Virginia and the Cremation Society of Virginia located in Richmond and Charlottesville, Virginia. SCI has also entered into an agreement to acquire the Nelsen Funeral Home in Williamsburg and the Cremation Society of Virginia in Chantilly, which is expected to be completed prior to year-end. This transaction will ensure that a tradition of high quality funeral services will continue at these businesses.

Details of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 1892, Nelsen Funeral Home has served the Richmond community for over 120 years. Blair Nelsen, owner and CEO, and his team have built one of the finest funeral operations in Virginia. Under Mr. Nelsen’s leadership, Nelsen Funeral Home has expanded into Ashland and Williamsburg. Additionally, Nelsen founded the Cremation Society of Virginia in 1996 to provide affordable, simple cremation services. Cremation Society of Virginia is the largest cremation society in Virginia and has grown to three locations servicing Central, Piedmont and Northern Virginia.

Nelsen and SCI have worked closely together to ensure a smooth transition. “We’re excited about the opportunity to team-up with SCI and continue serving families throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia with the highest quality funeral service,” stated Mr. Nelsen. Mr. Nelsen currently serves as the President of the Virginia Board of Funeral Directors and Embalmers and will continue to pursue his interest in regulatory matters as the Director of Governmental Affairs for SCI for the Eastern Region of the United States.

SCI does not anticipate any significant changes to operations. The existing management team and nearly all staff will stay in place. Additionally, SCI will continue to fulfill all customers’ pre-need contracts. Mike Gony, SCI’s Managing Director in the Mid Atlantic, is pleased to welcome the Nelsen and Cremation Society of Virginia family to SCI. “We are very excited to have Blair and his team join our company and we look forward to their continued success in Virginia.

Service Corporation International, headquartered in Houston, Texas, is North America's leading provider of deathcare products and services. At September 30, 2012, it owned and operated 1,429 funeral homes and 374 cemeteries (of which 215 are funeral home/cemetery combinations) in 43 states, eight Canadian provinces and the District of Columbia. Through our businesses, we market the Dignity Memorial® brand which offers assurance of quality, value, caring service, and exceptional customer satisfaction. For more information about Service Corporation International, please visit our website at For more information about Dignity Memorial, please visit

Posted Nov. 28, 2012


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