P eeples-Rhoden Funeral Home, Inc. has been serving the families of Hampton County and the surrounding low country area for over 75 years. Founded by Mr. Eugene Peeples, and originally known as Peeples Funeral Service, it was one of the first funeral homes in the low country of South Carolina. When the business began, they made their own burial vaults out of cement and operated the local ambulance service, being one of the last funeral homes in the state to relinquish that responsibility to the county in 1978. In the early l950's, while under the direction of Jimmy Holland and Earl Peeples, son of Eugene Peeples, the name was changed to Peeples-Holland Funeral Home. In 1975, after the untimely death of Jimmy Holland, Gordon L. Rhoden, Sr., joined the firm as general manager. Soon after, Gordon acquired the business and the name was then changed to Peeples-Rhoden Funeral Home, Inc. His brother, John B. Rhoden, Jr., joined Gordon in the business and remained a member of the firm until his retirement in 2004.
The original business was located in Hampton on the corner of First Street and Elm Street until 1985 when the decision was made to construct a new facility at 300 Mulberry Street, approximately 3 blocks from the original business. On April 21, 1986, the new structure was complete and the physical move was made.
Gordon L. Rhoden, Sr. and his wife Brenda Rhoden own and operate the business located in Hampton as well as the Chapel located at 330 Clarke Avenue in Estill. In December of 2003, Gordon and his son, Lee Rhoden purchased Parker Funeral Home, now Parker-Rhoden Funeral Home, in Walterboro.. In keeping with its Hampton County connections, that business was owned by the late Fred Parker, a native of Crocketville who was the Mayor of Hampton in 1928 and 1929. Lee manages that funeral home, but both Gordon and Lee play a major role in the operation of all their facilities.
Gordon graduated from the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science in 1970, is Past President of the South Carolina Funeral Directors Association, Past Vice President of the South Carolina Coroner's Association and has just been reelected to his 8th term as Hampton County Coroner, making him one of the longest serving coroners in South Carolina. Gordon and Brenda are members of Hampton First Baptist Church, where he has served as Deacon. They also have two daughters, Lori Rhoden Ewing and husband Stacey of Atlanta, GA and Ryan Rhoden Brunson and husband Rabi of Hampton, as well as seven grandchildren: Gretchen, Cress and Emmie Rhoden, Grant Ewing and Olivia, Emma Clare and Sims Rhoden Brunson.
Lee Rhoden is a 1991 graduate of The Citadel and a 1992 graduate of Gupton Jones College of Funeral Service. He is Past President of the South Carolina Board of Funeral Service is a member of the DMORT, a federal team that is activated to major catastrophes involving large numbers of fatalities. He was asked to respond to the terrorist attack on America and was activated to New York City on September 11, 2001 where he spent almost six weeks working with the office of the New York Medical Examiner in the task of identifying the remains of the victims of that attack. He has also been activated to help with Flight 587, was sent to Noble, GA in 2002 and in 2005 he was again asked to join his fellow DEMORT team members to assist with Hurricane Katrina. Lee and his wife, Susan have three daughters and reside in Walterboro.
Today, as it was in 1924, we continue to be a family serving the needs of bereaved families in a compassionate, caring and dignified manner.