Why should you choose us?
Mission Hills Memorial Chapel, Crematory and Gardens, and North Shore Memory Gardens are family-owned facilities.
Please see owner Bert Edquist’s story. Bert’s experience and the struggles his mother faced when his father passed away unexpectedly give him a deep understanding of what families who experience a loss are going through.
Mission Hills Memorial Chapel, Crematory and gardens
Frances our office manager has been employed here since 1959. She has over 59 years of experience helping and serving our customers. Lisa, our office secretary has been with Mission Hills for over 10 years. Prior to that, she worked 20 years for Brandywine Community School Corporation, during that time, she served 15 years as the accounts payable clerk. A licensed pre-need specialist can assist families with questions regarding cemetery or funeral planning at any of our facilities.
Our grounds crew at Mission Hills includes Kenny, Darrell, Steve, and Eric.
North Shore Memory Gardens
Traci the office manager started as office secretary 17 years ago. Through those years, Traci has helped us in so many ways. It wouldn’t be unusual to see her working on the cemetery grounds.
Our grounds crew at North Shore Memory Gardens include Steve, Eric, Joe, and Shorty.
We are members of the Michigan Cemetery Association of which Bert is a past president. Also, we are members of the International cemetery, cremation and funeral association. Our staff has the experience guiding loved ones through loss. Your service will be handled sensitively and correctly on the first and only opportunity. We live by the words of Maya Angelou, “People will forget what you did and what you said, but they won’t forget how you made them feel.”
Many health experts agree that our society does a poor job in addressing the needs of people who are grieving. If you wish, we can guide you to a local bereavement group.
We are the only crematory in Niles, Michigan, and in Cass County, and our cremation specialists are certified through the Cremation Association of North America (CANA). The crematory is open to inspection at any time. We also welcome family members at the time of the cremation of their loved ones and assure you the peace of mind that your loved one will be handled by our specialists with the highest standards of care and accountability.
A Letter From Owner, Bert Edquist
How My Dad’s death helped me understand the value of pre-planning
On the warm summer Wednesday evening of July 15, 1970, I guess I was about 19 years old, my dad and I attended a college class at Valparaiso University. We were taking the college course together. After class, we picked up my mother for a quick trip to Dairy Queen. Of course being 19 I wanted to drive, dad was next to me in the passenger’s seat.
On the way, my dad commented he didn’t feel well, seconds later he coughed once and his unconscious head fell back. In complete horror, my mother from the back seat, held my dad’s head, as I raced to the police station a few blocks away. There, they placed dad on a respirator, forcing him to breathe. The ambulance finally arrived and transported dad to the hospital.
We raced home to pick up my brother. Our trip to the hospital was surreal. We didn’t know if dad was dead or alive.
Upon arrival at the emergency room, our worst fears were realized. Dad was dead of a massive heart attack. He was only 56 years young. One minute we were going for ice cream, and the next my dad was gone. That was the day I learned how fast your whole world can be thrown into chaos.
In the days that followed, I watched my mother struggle with burial & funeral decisions. She was in a total fog. My uncle was our funeral director, he tried to provide us with guidance, but we were all in shock, especially my mom, and decisions were very difficult her, for all of us.
The struggles that my mother faced in those very trying days, was the basis for my career decision.
Everyone, at some point in their life, will experience a death. It is the ONE event that NO ONE will escape. In 1975, 5 years after my father’s untimely death, I started helping families to preplan their burial and funeral decisions, while in the comfort of their own homes, without the trauma of a death clouding their decisions. Over the years I have been thanked many times by families that had to do nothing more than sign a few papers. Preplanning relieved the emotional and financial stress that my mother and so many other families I have seen over the years go through.
Ironically, my dad’s death has helped me to help others. Thank you, Dad