From Our Family

to your Family

Harry McKneely & Son Funeral Home have served the local community for many generations.  

We are proud of our professional and compassionate staff. When faced with the challenges of making funeral arrangements and prearrangements, you will find our knowledge and expertise a great comfort.

We are committed to the very best care of the families and their loved ones which we are privileged to serve at this most difficult time.
In keeping with that commitment, we provide several resources on our website to help with arrangement process, and we are always available to answer your questions.

Meet

Our team

Owner

Lance Vicknair

Lance is a lifelong resident of Ponchatoula where he currently lives with his wife, Crystal. He has two sons, Lawson and Kale, and attends The Mission Church in Hammond.

Lance has been a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer with Harry McKneely & Son since he began serving the Hammond and Ponchatoula communities in 1991. He has extensive experience in all aspects of funeral service, and was an integral part in the development and construction of the first crematory in Tangipahoa Parish at Harry McKneely & Son Funeral Home in Hammond. Lance has always had a passion for helping people and he is honored to continue to support the needs of those he serves.  

He is a member of the Hammond Chamber of Commerce, the Ponchatoula Chamber of Commerce, the Louisiana Funeral Directors Association,and the National Funeral Directors Association.

Lance Vicknair
Manager / Funeral Director / Embalmer

Gregory Hill

Greg has been a licensed Funeral Director since 1985. He has been with Harry McKneely & Son since 2002 and is the Manager of Operations. He chose this profession because he finds it very rewarding to help people through a difficult time.

He is a native of Hammond and lives in Springfield with his wife, Debbie Davis Hill. He enjoys working at a family owned funeral home because it gives him the ability to serve families on a more personal level.

Greg also served as Alderman of Springfield and is a member of the Hammond Chamber of Commerce, the Ponchatoula Chamber of Commerce, the Louisiana Funeral Directors Association, and the National Funeral Directors Association.

Gregory Hill
Office Manager

Jobeth Vicknair Faust

JoBeth has been with Harry McKneely & Son since 2003 where she began as an administrative assistant. She is now the Office Manager.  JoBeth is a graduate of Loranger High School and Southeastern Louisiana University.

Jobeth Vicknair Faust
Assistant Manager / Funeral Director / Embalmer

Erica Wells

Erica is a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer with over 20 years of experience, and holds licenses in both Texas and Louisiana. She is a 2001 graduate of the Dallas Institute of Funeral Service, and earned a Bachelor of Science from the University of Texas at Dallas. Erica is also a licensed Crematory Operator and Life Insurance Agent.

Erica moved to Louisiana in 2013 and married her childhood sweetheart, Casey, the same year. They currently live in Baton Rouge with their son, Otto. She is a member of the Hammond Chamber of Commerce and the Louisiana Funeral Directors Association. Erica and her family attend church at Trinity Lutheran Church in Baton Rouge and she is a volunteer contributor for FindAGrave.com.

Erica Wells
Funeral Director

Lance Hutson

Lance is a native and resident of Ponchatoula where he lives
with his wife, Monica. He has 3 children, Jordan Threadgill (Jacob), Emily and Mackenzie Hutson. He is a graduate of Ponchatoula High School and Southeastern Louisiana University. After recently retiring from the Livingston Parish Public School System after 26 years of service, Lance became a licensed funeral director. He and his family attend Jerusalem Baptist Church in Pumpkin Center, where he serves as a deacon.

Lance Hutson
Funeral Director / Embalmer

Haden Puma

Haden was born and raised in Ponchatoula, Louisiana and graduated from Ponchatoula High School in 2014. Haden worked as a missionary for several years with The Mission Church and Youth With a Mission, spending most of his time in Texas, Mexico, and Haiti. Upon returning home, Haden joined our staff in 2018, and quickly felt at home helping people through their time of need.

Haden resides in Hammond with his fiancée, Elizabeth. He enjoys meeting new people and spending time getting to know others. He and his family attend The Mission Church in Hammond.

Haden Puma
Funeral Director / Embalmer

Steve Newman

Steven has been a licensed Funeral Director since 1986. He joined the staff of Harry McKneely & Son in2020.

 He is a native of Franklinton and lives in Baton Rouge with his wife, Melinda Rabalais Newman.  He has one son, Perry Newman.  He is a graduate of Franklinton High School and Delgado Community College.

 Steven is a member of Broadmoor Baptist Church, Trinity Union Lodge #372 F&AM, the state and national funeral director’s associations and served as president of the East Baton Rouge Lions Club.

Steve Newman
Funeral Director and Embalmer

Thomas Cassaniti

Thomas was born and raised in Port Saint Lucie, Florida. He joined the United States Air Force shortly after relocating to Baton Rouge. He served four years as a C-17 Loadmaster stationed at Dover Air Force Base and is currently a member of the Air Force Reserve. Thomas moved back to Louisiana in 2016 to pursue his career in the funeral profession. He attended Delgado Community College where he graduated top of his class. He enjoys traveling to new locations and meeting new people.

Thomas Cassaniti
Preneed Consultant

Michael DePhillips

Michael is a lifelong resident of Livingston and Tangipahoa Parish. He is a graduate of Hammond High School and earned a bachelor’s degree in ministry from Andersonville Theological Seminary and Leavel College. Michael was a detective off-and-on for 24 years with Hammond Police Department and Tangipahoa Sheriff’s Office and helped businesses with risk management for 15 years.

Michael is the founding pastor of Jesus Place Church in Springfield. He and his wife live in Springfield and have been married since 1987. They have 6 children and 12 grandchildren. Michael worked for Harry McKneely & Son as a preneed consultant in 1986 before following a career in law enforcement. Michael recently rejoined our team assisting families preplanning their funeral arrangements.

Michael DePhillips
Funeral Assistant

Jim Faust

Jim began working at Harry McKneely & Son in the 1970s along side the late Harry McKneely, Sr., the late Harry McKneely, Jr., and Jim's own father, the late Bryant Faust. After a 34-year career with the Tangipahoa Parish School System, Jim returned to Harry McKneely & Son in 2001.  

He has served as President of the Louisiana Association for Public and Community Adult Education, board member of the Richard Murphy Hospice Foundation and member of the Education Committee of the Hammond Chamber of Commerce.  He is an elder and trustee of the First Christian Church in Hammond.

Jim Faust
Insurance Claims / Death Certificates

Libby Brandenburg

Libby is a lifelong resident of Ponchatoula. She graduated from Ponchatoula High School class of 2014 and attended Southeastern University. She currently lives in Ponchatoula with her fiancé, Lawson, and two cats, Nala and Buddy. In her spare time Libby enjoys painting, fishing, and visiting the beach.  Libby has been with Harry McKneely & Son since March of 2020, where she assists families with insurance claims and filing death certificates.  

Libby Brandenburg
Funeral Assistant

Kassidy Lemons

Kassidy was born and raised in Hammond, Louisiana and currently resides in Independence. She attended Albany High School and then graduated as a Cosmetologist from Compass Career College. Kassidy is very caring and compassionate, and she looks forward to helping families as a funeral assistant at Harry McKneely & Son. She is currently working toward a degree in Mortuary Science to become a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer. In her free time, Kassidy enjoys being with her family and friends, boating, and being out on the water.

Kassidy Lemons
Funeral Assistant

Alexis Balfantz

Alexis was born and raised in Hammond, Louisiana and currently resides in Hammond with her fiancé Jaggard and their son Asher. She graduated Ponchatoula High School in 2012 and has been a Certified Expanded Duty Dental Assistant since 2017. Alexis loves going down the river and traveling anywhere, but especially to Disney World. As a funeral assistant at Harry McKneely & Son, Alexis is very attentive to the needs of others and is dedicated to helping families. She is currently working toward a degree in Mortuary Science to become a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer.

Alexis Balfantz