Jake, Lauren, and Renner Penwell
Jake Penwell, Owner/Funeral Director
Born and raised in Shelby, I have been given a life of opportunity and happiness from this outstanding community. After graduating from Shelby Senior High School in 2008, where I was president of my class, I furthered my education at Xavier University where I got a degree in business. After Xavier, I began my studies at the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science where I received my Bachelor’s degree in 2011. I was president of my class at CCMS and was the recipient of the Charles O. Dhonau Memorial Embalming Award which was given in recognition of outstanding achievement in the combined theory and practice of embalming, an award I truly attribute to the many people, especially Bob, whom I have learned from over the years.
While at CCMS, I met and become very close friends with Lauren Baughman. Although there was no doubt between the two of us (and all of those around us) that we had a strong connection then, our careers were on the forefront for us both as we returned to our hometowns of Canal Winchester and Shelby to serve our communities as funeral directors. We both truly believe that our time “apart” was fundamental in building what is “Jake & Lauren” today. Although it took a bit (10 years, exactly), we knew each other better than most already, knew each other’s friends and families, and finally realized what we always “knew” and that was that our love for each other was there “since mortuary school” and even stronger now than ever. We were married October 3, 2020 and are building the happiest life together. On June 30, 2022 God gave us the sweetest little girl, Renner Marie. She is funny, full of personality, welcoming, loves all the boys, and so very fun. Parenting has changed us for the better.
On September 1, 2018 I became the proud owner of the Penwell Turner Funeral Home, a dream I have had for many years. I have wanted to be a funeral director since I was a little boy. In 2003 when I was in 8th grade, I shadowed Bob Turner as a part of the Shelby Rotary Club Shadowing Day and was convinced my dream to be funeral director and embalmer was the path I was going to take. I started working for them later that year, and now in my 20th year at the funeral home- five years in ownership, I would not change a thing. Serving people- the deceased, their families, and the community, is by far my most professional passion. Every single person we serve that crosses the threshold of my funeral home means so very much to my family. They are treated as our own.
I have many friends from Shelby, Xavier, and CCMS that I like going to visit and spend time with and we thoroughly enjoy traveling when our work schedule allows. I’ve always enjoyed being very active and continue to do that by being a member of Shelby Rotary Club where I am a past-president and continue to sit on the Board of Directors, President of the Community Improvement Corporation of Shelby where I am a leader with the PathForward Committee spearheading Economic Development and Downtown Revitalization in Shelby and Richland County, Vice-Chair of the Richland Community Development Group, Board Member of the Richland Area Chamber & Economic Development, and am active in many other groups and events around town. My faith is very important to me and I am a member of Most Pure Heart of Mary Catholic Church where I have been very active over the years. My parents, Jon and Marty (Imhoff) Penwell, also live in Shelby, as do my brother and sister-in-law, Colton and Maddie (Beer) Penwell and our nephews, J. Oliver “Ollie” and Henry. It’s nice to have them close, as I spend a lot of time with friends and family. I’m a huge promoter of the City of Shelby as it’s a great place to live and be an active part of the community. See you around town!
Bob and Catherine John Turner, Former Owners/ Retired Funeral Directors
Bob and Catherine (John) Turner moved their young growing family to Shelby in September of 1984 to pursue a dream of owning their own business and funeral home. The opportunity to ironically purchase the business in Catherine’s hometown of Shelby was maybe somewhat by coincidence, but really turned more into fate. The Turners dedicated not only their careers, but their lives and their family to the funeral home- the facilities, the business, and each and every family they served. It was over their 34 years of ownership, and many more as dedicated funeral professionals, that they helped thousands of families, many multi-generational, through loss, grief, and healing. Not only have they dedicated their life to service but also to their communities being very active in many organizations, some still today, and to assisting for their betterment.
Above all, Bob and Catherine always strived to be sure that the business they successfully grew and nurtured would be cared for in the same way well into the future. Throughout the years, they together took young individuals and mentored and loved each one of them to help build strong character and successful individuals- Jake being one of those. They raised Jake as one of their own, bringing him under their wing in 2004 at the young age of 14 and began teaching them everything they knew and giving him confidence and support to eventually become their successor- transpiring on September 1, 2018, exactly 34 years to the day after they made the same choice to dedicate their lives to funeral service in Shelby. Their story could not be told better than through this Richland Source article: https://www.richlandsource.com/business/shelbys-turner-funeral-home-under-new-ownership/article_21796a14-bf79-11e8-b9d1-3bfd0d45790d.html
After the sale, Bob and Catherine remained on staff full time each and every day until December 31, 2019 when they decided to retire from coming to work daily. Although leaving daily funeral service was not an easy decision, they worked very hard in their careers to enjoy time together in retirement. Bob and Catherine raised three children and now, thoroughly enjoy spending time with not only them, but especially their two grandchildren, Vivian and Julian. They enjoy starting to travel more- something that was not only difficult but absolutely impossible for the majority of their lives, and since retirement have taken up bike riding on several trials. Do not worry, Bob and Catherine may have retired from daily work, but they are still around town and available to anyone who asks for them. They still are an important part of not only the funeral home, but to Jake and Lauren personally.