Billy and Rhonda, Eva Ann and Clay McLean
Once you request the services of McLean Funeral Directors, we will immediately put our experienced funeral professionals to work for you. A single, dedicated individual will stay in contact with you every step of the way and guide you through the decision-making process. He or she will carefully explain your options, make recommendations at your request, take care of all the small details, and ensure that you and your family’s personal touch is always present.
McLean’s Full Time Family Services Staff
McLean’s Licensed Funeral Directors
Eva Ann Orr McLean
Eva Ann was raised in Buncombe County and after graduating from Columbia College with a BS in Home Economics, came to Gastonia in 1961. She was therapeutic dietician at Gaston Memorial Hospital and taught for many years in the Gaston Memorial School of Nursing. She has worked with Meals on Wheels, Cardiac Rehabilitation, and Hospice as a nutritional consultant. She married William Jacob McLean, Jr. in 1962 and is mother of Bill, III, Jamie and Clay and grandmother to three beautiful granddaughters.
Eva Ann has been very involved in the community, serving as president of the Women of the Church at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, president of the Junior League of Gaston County, on the board of directors of the Schiele Museum for eleven years, on the board of Cancer Services of Gaston County, and was appointed by the governor to the North Carolina Cemetery Commission, where she served for eight years.
She is a member of the Rotary Club of Gastonia , has served on the Board of Directors, and is a Paul Harris Fellow. She is president and CEO of Evergreen—A Quiet Place.
Eva Ann feels that women are a valuable asset in funeral service, and that compassion and understanding are key attributes of a funeral professional. “It is truly rewarding to help people through one of the worst times in their lives.”
Following the death of Bill McLean in 1997, Eva Ann married Joel Kendrick in 2002. She enjoys reading, needlework, and she and Joel enjoy time in the North Carolina mountains.
William McLean III
• Gaston County Native, son of William J. McLean, Jr. and Eva Ann Orr McLean
• Educated in Gaston County Schools, attended Christ School in Arden, NC; and Graduated from Gaston Day School, serving as Senior Class President
• Graduate of Xavier University – Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science, serving as Class President, degree in Mortuary Science
• Employed with McLean & Son, Inc, since 1983 and now serves as President and CEO D/B/A McLean Funeral Directors of Gastonia and Belmont
• Funeral Service licensee since 1986, State of North and South Carolina, Licensed life, accident, and health license in North Carolina, President of McLean & Son PreNeed Funeral Plan, Inc. A full service insurance and financial services corporation
• Founding Director of Alliance Bank and Trust Company
• Past Secretary, Treasurer, and President of Belmont Rotary Club 1992-1993, Paul Harris Fellow
• Current member of Rotary Club of Gastonia, serves on Board of Directors, Special Project Committee, and Past President 2007-2008, Rotary Foundation Bequest Society
• Hospice of Gaston County, Board Member, Executive Board Chairman, Capital Campaign Committee and Marketing Committee
• Former Gaston Lifesaving Crew Board Member, Secretary
• Salvation Army, Gastonia, NC, Advisory Council Board
• Member of A.F. & A.M. Masonic Lodge #627, Oasis Shrine, Gastonia York Rite Bodies
• 2006 Business Person of the Year “Ruby Award” Gaston Chamber of Commerce
• Member of Selected Independent Funeral Homes
• Member of the National Funeral Directors Association with a Certified Preplanning Consultant Designation
• Past President of Lowell Elementary PTO, and former member Belmont Central Elementary PTO
• Current member of South Point High School PTO Booster Club
• Husband of 23 years to Rhonda Deal McLean, Vice President of McLean Funeral Directors
• PROUD Father to Sarah Ann McLean age 20 and Kathryn Orr McLean, age 16
• Avid Outdoorsman, fly-fisherman, sport fisherman, and hunter. Member of Trout Unlimited, Ducks Unlimited Bronze Sponsor for over ten years, Local Chapter Chairman for three years, National Wild Turkey Federation Sponsor, and Charter Member of Quail Unlimited. Licensed U.S.C.G. Captain, owner of Fish-N-Trip Off-shore charter service.
• Active member of First Presbyterian Church of Belmont, Deacon, Assistant Treasurer, Member of Finance, Building and Renovation Committees
M. Clay McLean is the youngest son of W.J. “Bill” McLean, Jr. and Eva Ann Orr McLean. He was born and raised in Gastonia, and graduated from Ashbrook High School. Clay is also a graduate of Guilford College in Greensboro, NC where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science. After a few years of figuring out what he would do with his life, Clay decided in 1997 to attend John A. Gupton Mortuary School in Nashville, TN where he graduated second in his class.
“I decided to join the family funeral business after working with my Dad for four and a half years. I saw the compassion that he gave to families in need and their appreciation to him in return. It grew an appreciation in me for all that my father had done for me and I saw how he had achieved that. These experiences with him showed me the importance of being of service to your community and taught me that it is what I also wanted to do.”
Clay is active in the Belmont Rotary Club and is a past-president and a Paul Harris Fellow. He serves on the Board of Directors of Holy Angels and is a past board member of The Little Theater of Gastonia where he still enjoys performing on the stage. He enjoys percussion, golf, fishing, and anything outdoors.
Chaplain John H. Stanley
John Stanley is Chaplain of McLean Funeral Directors and he is Pastor, Robinson Memorial Presbyterian Church, and Minister--Visitation, First Presbyterian. He is a graduate of the School of the Laity/ Commissioned Lay Pastor Course, Presbytery of Western North Carolina. He also completed the Academy of Reformed Theology and Parish Leadership Course at Union/Presbyterian School of Christian Education. His prior education was obtained at Norman College, Norman Park, Georgia and the University of North Carolina at Pembroke. He is a member of the North Carolina Chaplain’s Association.
Following the death of their 16-year old daughter, John and Rose established the Southern Piedmont Chapter of the Compassionate Friends, a nationwide support group for bereaved families. Active and involved in community life, John is a Rotary Paul Harris Fellow and a past president of Gastonia East Rotary Club. Also, he is past chairman of the Gaston Chamber of Commerce; past master of Gastonia Masonic Lodge, and he is past potentate (Chief Executive Officer) of Oasis Shriners, Charlotte. John has served on the boards of directors of the Gaston County Economic Development (EDC) Commission, and Gaston Skills, and the Cabinet of the Gaston United Way. He was named the Civitan Citizen of the Year in 2004.
A second career pastor, John was Director of Commercial Marketing, Public Service Company of NC, a natural gas distribution company. Immediately prior to responding to God’s call to full time ministry, he was Director of External Relations of PSNC Energy, a SCANA Company, a successor to Public Service Company.
Lindsay M. Lockett
Lindsay is a native of Gastonia, and a graduate of Western Carolina University with a BSBA in Marketing. Lindsay became a NC licensed funeral director in 2001 and received her CPC (Certified Preneed Consultant) designation from the National Funeral Directors Association in 2003. She has worked with McLean Funeral Directors since 1999 and she enjoys assisting families with their prearrangement needs. Lindsay is a member of First United Methodist Church in Gastonia and is currently serving as President of the Gastonia East Rotary Club.
Lindsay says, “Helping people with their prearrangement needs is my passion. It’s so valuable and meaningful for your loved ones and it’s so easy to do! In addition to planning Wills and Estate Planning, more and more people are putting Prearrangements on their “checklist” of items to do."
Bill a resident of Gastonia, graduated from Kings Mountain High School, attended Oregan State University and after an enlistment in the U.S. Navy attended Cleveland Technical College in Shelby, N.C., received his funeral directors license in 1975, graduated from Gupton Jones College of Mortuary Science in Atlanta, Ga. in 1981 and converted his funeral directors and embalmers license into a funeral service license in 1982. He has been a member of the North Carolina Funeral Directors Association for several years.
Bill has been active in the Gaston community serving with various organizations such as the Jaycees, AM Optimist, Boy Scouts of America at local and district levels, Rotary, Masonic Orders, Hospice and Pop Warner Football. He and his wife were active in various activities in schools their children attended. Gardner Park Elementary, Holbrook Middle School, Gaston Christian Academy, Grier Middle School and Ashbrook High School.
At the present time Bill is active with the Lowell Masonic Lodge #590 in Lowell, Oasis Shriners, Scottish Rite Valley of Charlotte, Knights of St. Andrew, Gaston County Shrine Club and the antique fire truck unit of the Oasis Shrine, Oasis Wagoneers.
Bill and his wife Deanna were married in 1968 and have two children and six grandchildren. He is an avid Carolinas Panther fan and enjoys trying his skills at the frustrating game of golf.
"My interest in funeral service started in 1969 at the death of my grandmother. We were lost, we did not know what to do. The funeral director that served our family realized we were lost and took his time and helped us through a very difficult time."
"I remember thinking, it must be a very rewarding career to help someone in a situation that they don’t want to be in and have no idea what to do."
"To this day I still feel the same way."
Jeff is a managing funeral director and has been with the McLean family since January 2007. A Raleigh, NC native, he is a graduate of Gupton-Jones College and the National Foundation of Funeral Service School of Management. He is also a Past President of the North Carolina Funeral Directors Association in addition to, a member of the Gaston Breakfast Rotary Club where he serves as an officer.
His hobbies include hiking, cooking and traveling. He is an avid SEC football fan, a hockey fan, especially of the Carolina Hurricanes, and a member of the Professional Car Society, which is dedicated to the restoration and preservation of vintage hearses, limousines and ambulances. Jeff is married to the Rev. Dr. Joan Martin who is chaplain at Covenant Village in Gastonia
“People need to grieve the death of someone they love and cared for. They should also celebrate that person’s life as well. Creating the venue and allowing folks to achieve their wishes brings me great personal satisfaction.”
Don Long is a life-long resident of Gastonia and graduate of Ashbrook High School and the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science. He attends Bethesda United Methodist Church with his wife of 35 years, Nettie Gilreath Long. He enjoys fishing, golf and antiquing.
Don has been in Funeral Service for over thirty years and feels it is a small way of giving back to God and the families he serves.
“From day one my mentors and teachers who have put me on track include Rosell Grissom, Reid Crawford, Bill McLean, Jr., Bill McLean Sr., and Bill Ward. They molded me into the Funeral Service Professional I am today. I’m thankful for McLeans and the opportunity I’ve been given to serve families the way they should be served. Taking care of all their needs as if they were my own family.”
Rhonda Deal McLean, born and raised in Gaston County and currently resides in Belmont. Daughter of Helen Sullivan and Jerry Deal.
Graduated from Ashbrook High School and Central Piedmont Community College. Married William J. McLean, III in 1986 and mother of Sarah Ann and Kathryn “Katy” O. McLean.
Became a licensed funeral director in 1988 and is also a licensed insurance agent. Received the designation of Certified Pre Planning Consultant in 2003.
Current Sustaining Member and Past President of the Junior League of Gaston County. Member of the Gastonia Debutante Club. Past board member of the Heart Society of Gaston County, where served as chairman of The Heart Ball. Past President of PTA at Lowell Elementary and also South Point High School. Currently serving third term as a Member of the Board of Trustees at Gaston College. Board member of Gaston College Foundation. A Paul Harris Fellow recipient.
Hobbies include tennis, boating, walking and shopping with daughters. Also enjoys Red Raider and Appalachian State Football and watching Katy O. play soccer and tennis.
Joined McLean’s in 2006 as a funeral director and went on to become the Manager of our Belmont location. "Serving families is an honor and a privilege and I take it very seriously. I'm doing what I've been called to do...I simply help people." And he's very good at it. He was voted "Professional of the Year" by his peers in 2009 and focuses on providing McLean's families with the best service and professionalism possible. He has been duly licensed as a Funeral Director and Embalmer for fifteen years, is experienced in business management, a member of the National Conference, the National Funeral Directors Association and is an active SPHS Booster Club Member. He lives in Belmont with his wife of 29 years, Ruth and has three sons. "I have my faith, my family and my community and I'm doing what I'm supposed to be doing professionally. It really doesn't get any better than that".
Cynthia "Deedy" Barbee
Deedy is a lifelong resident of Gaston County. She is a graduate of Fayetteville Tech and Gaston College and a member of Sharon Freewill Baptist Church. She has one daughter and two granddaughters -which she just adores- and enjoys spending time with her parents. Her hobbies are reading, traveling, photography, water sports, camping and spoiling her German Shepherd, Diamond.
Deedy has been with McLean's since October of 1998.
"I want to take the burdens and concerns away from the families I serve and carry the burdens myself. It is such a wonderful feeling of accomplishment when you serve a family and after the funeral they thank you for making such a difficult time much easier, that is my reward. It is an honor to serve a family knowing they put their trust and confidence in us. We serve all families the same; with compassion and dignity just as if they were our own family, that's the McLean way, always going that extra mile. I have a personal relationship with each family I serve. Funeral service is both personal and professional."
Randy was born and raised in the Heath Springs area of Lancaster County, he graduated from Heath Springs High School and is a veteran of the United States Air Force. He and his wife, Gana, have one son, and are members of Sherwood Baptist Church. Randy retired with over 30 years in the electrical industry and is an active member of the Heath Springs Lions Club, Barron Masonic Lodge, and the Lancaster York Rite Bodies.
Reverend Gerald Eaves
Reverend Bobby Joyner