Obituaries

Karen Smith
B: 1957-10-13
D: 2019-03-13
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Smith, Karen
Betty Swenson
B: 1932-01-23
D: 2019-03-11
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Swenson, Betty
Roger Padgett
B: 1937-01-21
D: 2019-03-06
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Padgett, Roger
Pat Anderson
B: 1938-09-20
D: 2019-02-24
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Anderson, Pat
Pamela Ritter
B: 1965-06-18
D: 2019-02-22
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Ritter, Pamela
Ethel Mae Odum
B: 1918-10-18
D: 2019-02-21
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Odum, Ethel Mae
Thomas Cofield
B: 1933-03-03
D: 2019-02-15
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Cofield, Thomas
Carolyn Paulsen
B: 1940-08-24
D: 2019-02-13
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Paulsen, Carolyn
Violet "Dude" Harper
B: 1928-07-20
D: 2019-02-11
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Harper, Violet "Dude"
John Andrew Makosky
B: 1934-07-24
D: 2019-02-03
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Makosky, John Andrew
Ida Loutrelle "Trelle" Baird Wade
B: 1932-07-08
D: 2019-02-01
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Wade, Ida Loutrelle "Trelle" Baird
James Toler
B: 1946-03-05
D: 2019-01-29
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Toler, James
Ruby "Bertie" Harmon
B: 1933-03-29
D: 2019-01-28
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Harmon, Ruby "Bertie"
Raymond "Ray" Wells
B: 1944-06-13
D: 2019-01-26
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Wells, Raymond "Ray"
Lillie Mae "Mickie" Wilkins
B: 1940-01-17
D: 2019-01-18
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Wilkins, Lillie Mae "Mickie"
Herbert Baty
B: 1930-11-15
D: 2019-01-10
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Baty, Herbert
Hector, Dawson Co. Sheriff's Dept. K-9
D: 2019-01-09
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Dawson Co. Sheriff's Dept. K-9, Hector,
Kenneth Chambers
B: 1968-03-16
D: 2019-01-06
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Chambers, Kenneth
Eddie Chester
B: 1959-04-27
D: 2019-01-03
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Chester, Eddie
Dorothy Jones
B: 1936-02-12
D: 2019-01-02
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Jones, Dorothy
Earni Pulley
B: 1943-12-05
D: 2018-12-31
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Pulley, Earni

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334 Highway 53 East
P. O. Box 185
DAWSONVILLE, GA 30534
Phone: 706-265-3159
Fax: 706-265-2557

Our Staff


Ted Bearden, President
Email: ted@beardenfuneralhome.com

Ted started his funeral career in 1970  at this same firm.  After graduating from Gupton Jones College, he spent over 15 years in funeral service with the largest funeral home in Atlanta.  He also serves as Dawson County's Coroner.  He has served as president of the Independent Funeral Directors of Georgia, the Georgia Coroner's Association where he was awarded Coroner of the Year in Georgia in 2010, and the Dawson County Rotary Club.  He currently serves on the Board of Directors for United Community Bank and previously served on the Dawson County Board of Health.  Ted is a member of the Dawson County Art's Council, the Chamber of Commerce, the Independent Funeral Directors of Georgia, Academy of Graduate Embalmers, Georgia Funeral Directors Association and the National Funeral Directors Association.  In 2010 he was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by Dawson County Emergency Services for his contribution to the development of the program and in 2017 awarded as the Business Leader Of The Year by The Dawson County Chamber of Commerce.  He is a member of Bethel Baptist Church where he has held several positions.  Having played music most of  his life, he is a founding member of the acoustic group, Little Mountain.  Ted and his wife Lisa have two sons, James and Wesley.

James Bearden, Vice President
Email: james@beardenfuneralhome.com

A licensed funeral director, embalmer and life insurance agent, James grew up alongside his father in funeral service.  He was an honor graduate of Dawson County High School and Ogeechee School of Funeral Service in Statesboro, GA.   A member of many funeral associations and the Academy of Graduate Embalmers, James has served as a District Chair for the Georgia Funeral Director's Association and been a board member of the Dawson County Chamber of Commerce.  James also operates Dawsonville Monuments, serving the cemetery needs in the area.  He and his wife, Alivia are members of Bethel Baptist Church.

Wesley Bearden
Email: wesley@beardenfuneralhome.com

Wesley grew up in funeral service with both his father and brother to serve as mentors.  An honor graduate of Dawson County High School, he is currently serving his funeral service apprenticeship and serves as a Dawson County Deputy Coroner.  Wesley is a member of Bethel Baptist Church.

Rick Wiggins
Email: rick@beardenfuneralhome.com

Rick is a licensed funeral director and embalmer that joined our staff in January of 2018.  He is a graduate of Gupton Jones Mortuary College with an Associates Degree in Mortuary Science.  He started his career in Funeral Service in January of 2006 after he retired as a Chief Warrant Officer from the United States Navy with over 20 years of service and serving during Operation Desert Shield, Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom.  He resides in Dawsonville with his wife, the former Ms. Connie Pugh Charles. They have two children, Candi Palmer and Daniel Charles, and 5 grandchildren. He is a member of Liberty Baptist Church in Dawsonville and Chestatee Masonic Lodge F&AM #102.

Catherine Manier

Catherine's father originally established the funeral home in 1965 and she has worked many years in the firm.  When Mr. Bearden purchased the funeral home she was promoted to Office Manager where her many valuable skills and insight serves the firm and community as well.

Audume Lord

A native of Dawson County and a graduate of Dawson County High School, Audume has been a part of our staff since January of 2009, joining full time in 2016.  A graduate of Gupton-Jones College of Mortuary science with an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science, she is a licensed funeral director and embalmer.  She resides in Cumming with her husband, Zach Gordon and two daughters, Addison and Scarlett.

Lanier Swafford

Lanier is a lifelong resident of Dawson County and joined the funeral home in 1984.  He is a graduate of Dawson County High School and Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service.  In addition to being a licensed funeral director and embalmer, he also has served as a Deputy Coroner since 1996.  For over 25 years Lanier served with Dawson County Emergency Services and ended his career as the Fire Chief and EMA Director. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for Lanier Technical College, the Amicalola EMC Operation Round Up Board, as well as a number of other professional organizations.  Lanier is a deacon of Bethel Baptist Church and is a member of Etowah Lodge #222 F & AM.  He and his wife Amy have two sons, Brendan and Bailey.

Rodney Castleberry

A native of Forsyth County, Rodney moved to Dawsonville in 2008 and joined our staff in 2009.  Rodney is a member of Chestatee Lodge #102 F & AM.  He and his wife Jessica are members of Bethel Baptist Church where they teach Sunday School and are youth choir directors.  They have two daughters, Maddie and Emma Kate.

James Swafford

James is a lifelong resident of Dawson County and joined our staff in 2002.  A U.S. Army veteran that served in Vietnam, he is a life member of Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 970.  Holding an associate’s degree in marketing and a bachelor’s degree in accounting, he retired after more than 32 years of Federal Service.  James is a member of Bethel Baptist Church in Dawsonville where he serves on the Board of Deacons and also as Adult Choir Director.  He is a member and Past Master of Etowah Lodge #222 F&AM.  James and his wife Jane have two sons, Lanier and Jason, and five grandchildren.

Michael Smith

Michael is a Graduate of Gilmer High School, Class of 2003, a graduate of Jefferson State Community College with a degree in Mortuary Science, Class of 2012. He is a licensed life agent, and specializes in helping families make funeral arrangements in advance.  He and his wife reside in the Cartecay Community in Ellijay. He is an Ordained Baptist Minister and a member of the River Hill Baptist Church and the Gilmer County Chamber of Commerce.

Kenny Williamson

A native of Gwinnett County, Kenny has lived in Forsyth County since 2000.  He joined our staff in 1995.  An extremely talented musician, he also has a full-time ministry.  Kenny and his wife Anita have two sons.

Charles Townsend

Charles grew up in funeral service in Gainesville, Georgia and has been serving families for over 50 years.  He spent 40 years in funeral service in Hall County and joined our staff in 2000.  He is a member of the First Methodist Church in Gainesville.  He and his wife Phyllis have three children.