Founder 1929 - 2011
J.P. was born in Sneedville, Tennessee, where he graduated from Sneedville High School in 1947. He earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business from East Tennessee State University in 1951. He served in the US Army during the Korean Conflict. Following the war, he and his brother Chester founded many cemeteries in Ohio, West Virginia, and Virginia including Sherwood Memorial Gardens, Wooster, Hillcrest Memorial Gardens, Wadsworth, and Eastlawn Memorial Gardens, Brunswick. With his sons, he was the founder of Roberts Funeral Home in Wooster, the first Cemetery / Funeral Home Combination in Ohio.
He was very active in the cemetery industry in Ohio and nationally, serving as president of the Ohio Association of Cemeteries and on the board of the American Cemetery Association. He earned the Outstanding Cemeterian Award in 1988, only the second time it had been presented.
He was a member of Grace Brethren Church and past president of the Madisonburg Lions Club. He served the Wooster community in many ways: raising money and donating thousands of hours to better the community. He enjoyed golf, fishing, travel, and spending time with his ten grandchildren.