Brent Hartley, a former funeral homeowner, and director died Wednesday, May 20, 2020, at the age of 55 in Toledo Hospital. He suffered from multiple complications of Diabetes.
Brent was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, on July 30, 1964, to Richard and Joann Hartley. He graduated from McComb High School in 1982. After high school graduation Brent opened his own restaurant, B’Michael’s in downtown McComb. Brent owned and operated B’Michael’s Restaurant until 1985. He then attended Findlay College and, after two years, transferred and graduated from the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Sciences in 1988.
Following graduation from mortuary science school, Brent returned to McComb, Ohio, to officially join the family business, Hartley Funeral Home, Inc., founded by his parents, Richard and Joann Hartley in 1966. Brent had unofficially worked at the family business throughout his childhood and, as a young adult helping his dad and working visitation. This allowed Brent to learn all aspects of the business from his father. The Hartley family always viewed this occupation more than just a profession, and Brent passionately carried on this tradition.
Brent began his career as an associate funeral director and embalmer at the Hartley Funeral Home. He worked side by side with his parents. He provided care and compassion to numerous families in the community during their greatest time of need. Brent became co-owner of Hartley Funeral Home upon the passing of his father in 1998. He and his mother continued to operate the business until they sold it and retired in 2015.
Brent was very actively involved in the McComb community and McComb Schools. He served on the McComb Village Council. He was a trustee and founding member of the non-profit, McComb Community Awareness. He was a member of the McComb Jaycees. Brent was a three-term President of the McComb Rotary Club. He was actively involved with multiple sports programs at McComb Local School. His positions included coaching varsity golf, Junior High football, Junior High and Varsity wrestling, and scouting for the McComb Varsity football team. Brent was also the recipient of the McComb Lion’s Club Citizen of the Year in 2002.
Brent was actively involved with the Ohio Funeral Directors Association (OFDA). He was a member of the OFDA’s Board of Directors for 13 years. He was a certified disaster training coordinator. Brent was an active member of the Disaster Mortuary Response Team (DMORT). DMORT is a Federal team of experts in the field of victim identification and mortuary services. DMORTs are activated in response to large scale disasters in the United States to assist in the identification of deceased individuals and the OFDA Mortuary Response team. He was deployed to several infamous disasters, including the ComAir crash in Monroe, Michigan, the Del Rio Texas flood, the Korean Air crash in Guam, Hurricane Charlie in Atlanta, Georgia, and Hurricane Katrina in Gulfport, Mississippi. Brent was most proud of his work as a DMORT member in giving closure to the family members of victims at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Brent spent more than three months in New York City, assisting in the identification of victims of this terrorist attack. He later gave public presentations on his experiences as a disaster team response member with the purpose of letting others know the value his profession could bring to people during their time of need.
He was a member of the Findlay Elks Lodge #75, Findlay Moose Lodge, Sycamore Lodge F&AM, and belonged to the Findlay Country Club.
Upon the sale of the business, he made his former weekend and summer home in Marblehead, Ohio, his full-time residence. He enjoyed spending hours on Lake Erie boating and fishing. Brent was an avid golfer and was proud of the fact that he was able to golf at many great golf courses around the country. He was an avid sports fan and loved the Ohio State Buckeyes, the Cincinnati Reds, and Cleveland Browns. He enjoyed playing poker and euchre. His biggest joy was sharing these activities with family and friends. He adored his niece and nephew and would always attend their sporting and school events, and travel on family vacations.
Brent is survived by his mother, Joann Hartley; sister, Dr. Brenda Hartley (Doug Dymarkowski); nephew, Drew Dymarkowski, and niece, Delanie Dymarkowski, and Aunt Susann Patton.
Visitation will be from 1:00-5:00 pm on Saturday, May 23, 2020 at the Witzler-Shank Funeral Home, 222 E. South Boundary Street, Perrysburg, Ohio 43551 (419-874-3133). Visitation will also be held on Sunday, May 24, 2020 from 1-5 pm at the Hanneman Funeral Home, 370 Park Drive South, P.O Box 61, (419-293-3552) McComb, Ohio 45858. The Funeral will be held on Tuesday, May 26, 2020 at the Hanneman Funeral Home at 11:00 am. The funeral service at 11 a.m. will be live streamed through the Hanneman Funeral Home, Findlay and McComb facebook page.
Memorial Contributions can be made to Life Connection of Ohio for organ transplants, 3661 Briarfield Blvd., Suite 105, Maumee, Ohio 43537 or the McComb Athletic Department, 328 S. Todd Street, McComb, Ohio 45858.
During these visitations and services, social distancing will be observed, and if you are unable to attend, the family encourages you to leave a message or condolence at www.witzlershank.com or www.hannemanfuneralhomes.com.