John Tranter was the fourth generation of the family-owned funeral director L Tranter & Son, and looked after countless residents in their hour of need over a career spanning 56 years.
When he retired for health reasons in 2017 he was understood to be Shropshire’s longest-serving funeral director.
Born in Shifnal Cottage Hospital in 1940, Mr Tranter had started an apprenticeship as a draughtsman at The Lilleshall Company when he contracted tuberculosis and had to spend two years in hospital, preventing him from completing his training. Aged 20 he took the decision to join the family business at West Street which was started in 1898 by Leonard Tranter.
His son, Symon, the fifth generation of the family, said: "He took to the business straight away. His main and real only concern was for the families he looked after.
"He was absolutely dedicated to personal service and worked seven days a week only because he could not work eight days a week. He was that sort of man."
He was known even on Christmas days to be helping people, and Symon added he "had a lot of loyalty and respect from the community because of that".
For many years John would be on call for 24 hours a day on his own.
Other members of the family dealt with admin roles which allowed John to concentrate on being the figurehead of the business.
The next 56 years saw many changes, improvements, and expansion to the business which now employees more than 20 people and operates three branches in St Georges, Donnington, and Newport.
"During that time John’s experience, guidance and local knowledge has helped thousands of Shropshire families plan fitting tributes for their loved ones," said Symon.
The business continues to be privately owned by the Tranter family and is managed and is operated by the fifth and sixth generations.
Mr Tranter died on July 17 aged 81 and his funeral will be held at St George's Parish Church on Thursday, August 11, 2022 at 11am, followed by a private committal service at Telford Crematorium.
Symon will be delivering the eulogy for his father and the company will be continuing to work as it has been.
He said: "My father would not want us to neglect other families and would expect us to be as professional as ever."
Donations in lieu of flowers are to be divided between The Cystic Fibrosis Trust and St Georges Church.