The Peacock tradition in the mortuary business dates back more than a century, and more than 8 decades here in Southeast Colorado.
It all started with two brothers. One, a grocery storeowner, the other a furniture store owner who was the mortician in the small Kansas town of Stafford. At the turn of the century it was not uncommon that the local mortician had the furniture store as well, where caskets were shown along with other furnishings. This 'undertaker' brother constantly called upon the grocery store owner for assistance. Soon they became partners.
In 1906, Clay Peacock's great grandfather, A.B. "Alva" Peacock, graduated from Kansas City College of Mortuary Science. Alva's brother had graduated from the same school in 1886. Years later, A.B. established the first funeral home and furniture store in Protection, Kansas. Alva's two sons, Jack and Ralph continued the funeral business tradition with Jack remaining in Protection and Ralph eventually starting a funeral home in Elkhart, Kansas.
In 1913, Ralph Peacock, Clay's grandfather, followed his father's example by graduating from KCCMS. After gaining his certificate, he operated the Peacock mortuary in Elkhart, Kansas.
During the depression years and dust bowl days of the 30's Elkhart's population drastically decreased and in 1936, Ralph Peacock moved his family to LaJunta, Colorado where he opened the Peacock Memorial Chapel.
In 1947, Clay's father R.E. "Sam" Peacock graduated from St. Louis College of Mortuary Science and returned to LaJunta to assist his father in the family business. After several years in LaJunta, Sam moved his family to Lamar, Colorado in 1973 to operate the Dolsen Almont mortuary.
Clay Peacock graduated from San Francisco College of Mortuary Science in March of 1983. It was July of 1983 that the Peacock's purchased Wood-Gamble Funeral Home. The funeral home was established by the late Dean Wood in 1947.
Besides Clay, his brother, Curtis Peacock owns and operates their grandfather's funeral home, Peacock-Larsen Funeral Home and Arkansas Valley Crematory in LaJunta.
John Sykes Joins Peacock Funeral Home
Joining Clay at Peacock Funeral Home is Mr. John Sykes. John began employment with Peacock Funeral Home on April 11, 2011. John is a 2002 graduate of McClave High School. Following graduation he attended the Amarillo Institute of Mortuary Science and graduated with honors in 2003. While in Texas, John worked for the Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors where he was able to obtain his knowledge and experience. On August 23, 2008, John was united in marriage to Danielle L. Kilpatrick, and has two girls, Jade and Jozlyn, the family resides in Lamar. John is a past director of the Lamar Chamber of Commerce, and is very involved with the Lamar Elks, Lamar Rotary, and is a member of the Lamar Eagles. He is also a member of the McClave and Wiley Methodist Church, and is involved with various youth activities such as serving on the McClave FFA Advisory Board, McClave FBLA Sponsor, and the Prowers County 4-H Foundation Board. John enjoys volunteering and giving back to his community, hunting, riding his motorcycle, and most importantly, spending time with his family.
For over 120 years, the Peacock Family has been helping families in southeast Colorado and southwest Kansas at the most difficult times in their lives.
Our history, our family tradition, embraces the concept of "one family caring for another" in a time of need. Today, that tradition continues at the Peacock Funeral Home.
Our pledge for four generations of trust and service has always been to provide caring, professional, personalized service, treating every family member we serve as we would our own loved ones...one family to another.