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Sassmann's Chapel History

The Sassmann Family, Geneva, Bruce and Jan, Sue, Scott, and Julie would like to introduce you to Mike and Pam Thomas and the new staff at Sassmann’s Chapel.

Beginning May 1st, 2013, Mike and Pam Thomas have taken responsibility of the Sassmann funeral homes in Belle and Bland. Bruce and Jan will continue to assist Mike and Pam in the transition of the business as they become established in our community.

Mike is a native of Poplar Bluff and graduated from Dallas Institute of Mortuary Science in 1983, making this his 30th year in the funeral industry. Mike is a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer as well as a licensed Preneed Agent. He also serves as the Osage County Deputy Coroner. In 2008 Mike and Pam purchased the Morton Chapel’s in Linn and Chamois. 

Pam is a native of Marshfield and a graduate of Marshfield High School. She received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Business from Webster University in St Louis. Pam has been a licensed Funeral Director and Preneed Agent since 2009. Pam also serves as the Treasurer for the City of Linn.

Mike and Pam have two sons, Blake and his wife Jennifer Thomas, who live in Poplar Bluff and Preston Thomas who attends college at the University of Missouri in Columbia. They also have two grandchildren, Reagan and Lily.

Kenny Dishman, Pam’s brother, will be the day to day manager of the Belle and Bland facilities and will be assisted by Mike and Pam as well as our additional staff members including Barbara Huse, who has worked for the Sassmann family for a number of years. Kenny is a licensed Funeral Director and Preneed Agent. He is a native of Marshfield and a graduate of Marshfield High School. 

The Thomas family and our staff are excited about being a part of the Belle and Bland communities. We will strive to build on the trust that has been placed in the Sassmann family for so many years.

The Sassmann family has been associated with the funeral industry for more than 100 years. A Gasconade county newspaper from the late 19th century advertised George Sassmann selling handmade furniture, cabinets, and coffins. In the early 20th century William Henry Sassmann started a funeral home in the railroad boom town of Bland. W.H. Sassmann died in 1923 leaving his widow Minnie Ritterbush Sassmann to continue the business until their only son Chester became of age. After WWII Chester expanded the business and built a new funeral home in Belle. Chet and Geneva Sassmann had two sons, David and Bruce, who continued as professionals in the family funeral business. Time changes everything and unfortunately, the family of funeral directors and embalmers began to grow smaller. Chester, the patriarch of the family, died in 1988. David and Bruce shared the responsibility of the business with their wives. In 2009, David passed away, leaving Bruce to carry on the family tradition.

Bruce is quoted, “Selling the business to caring professionals is the right thing to do. Waiting until my death or incapacity would only make life harder for our survivors” He goes on to say, “Our family has been acquainted with Mike and his family for almost two decades. They are compassionate and dedicated professional’s that will continue with our legacy to complete a century of Sassmann funeral service. We wish them well.”

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