History & Staff

We have years of experience caring for families, from all walks of life. Each family comes to us because they know we are leaders in our profession, dedicated to excellence in service, and have the highest integrity.

Our History

Our History

Maynard S. Cannon, founder of Appalachian Funeral Home began his career in funeral services at a young age with Pouder Brothers Funeral Service in Johnson City. He received his Tennessee State license in 1915 at age 21 and went to work for McAmmon Funeral Home in Maryville, TN. He married Leah Key in 1917 and worked in Maryville until 1921. In 1921, he, along with Sam Pangle, established Cannon-Pangle Funeral Home in Johnson CIty at the corner of N. Roan St. and Fairview Ave. He established the Appalachian Funeral Home at 305 N. Roan St. in 1926 and operated at that location until 1937. Thanks to a thriving funeral and ambulance service there was a need to expand, and property at N. Roan St. and 101 E. Unaka Ave. was purchased which served as the location for 50 years.

Charles T. (Charlie) Bowman began working with Appalachian Funeral Home in 1939 and married Maynard and Leah's doughter, Marie, in 1942. He served as president of the firm from 1952 until semi-retirement in 1982. He presided over a major expansion in 1956 when a modern chapel was built joining two properties and becoming one of the largest and most versatile facilities in East Tennessee. Charlie remained active in the business on a part-time basis and served as Chairman of the Board for a number of years until his passing in 2010. Mr. Bowman's son, Charles Maynard (Chuck) Bowman began part-time employment in 1966 and joined the firm full-time in 1970 after graduation from Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science. He became Vice-President of operations in 1976, was named President from1982-2005 until returning to Vice-President until his retirement in 2016. He is married to the former Nancy Webb. They have two sons, Charles M. Bowman, Jr. and Kevin Andrew Bowman. In 1986, the firm purchased Hartman Funeral Home at 800 E. Watauga Ave. and operated as Appalachian-Hartman Funeral Home at this present location before changing the name once again to Appalachian Funeral Home in 1999. The fourth generation of family ownership had Kevin Andrew Bowman serving as President from 2005-2019.

Our Valued Staff

  • David  Mathes

    David Mathes Manager, Funeral Director and Embalmer

    David W. Mathes is an Erwin native, the son of Rex S. and Linda J. Mathes, brother of Nancy L. Mathes and the late Elizabeth J. Mathes. He is a 1985 graduate of Unicoi County High School where he was a member of the 1984 State Champion and 1985 nationally ranked and record setting baseball teams. David attended Roane State Community College, Harriman, and East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, on baseball scholarships. He attended The Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science at Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio, and received an Associate Degree in Applied Science in Funeral Service Education from Jefferson State College, Birmingham, Alabama.

    David has continued his education and furthered his knowledge of restorative art and reconstruction through seminars and classes offered by the premier artists throughout the country. He is a member of First Christian Church, Johnson City, and is a member of the United Emmaus Community. David serves on the PTA executive board of directors at Indian Trail Intermediate School. Also, he volunteers as coach for Johnson City American Little League. David formerly served on the Board of Directors of Johnson City American Little League, the Board of Directors of Blue Ridge Donor Services, the Johnson City Civitan Club, and is Past-President of the Upper East Tennessee Funeral Directors Association. David was an active participant for many years lecturing classes to troubled youth in the area for the Moral Combat program.

    David is married to Lisa Rippetoe Mathes, has one son, Ian Hunter Mathes, and four step children. He is a Tennessee Licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer. David has been in the funeral industry full time since January 1, 1987.

  • Kevin  Bowman

    Kevin Bowman Funeral Director and Embalmer

    Kevin Andrew Bowman, a native of Johnson City, is a son of Charles M. Bowman, and a great-grandson of Maynard S. Cannon, the founder of Appalachian Funeral Home.

    Kevin is a 1988 graduate of Science Hill High School and attended the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.He received his bachelor's degree from East Tennessee State University in 1992.He attended and graduated from Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service in Atlanta, GA in 1994. Kevin has been an employee of Appalachian Funeral Home since 1987 and a fulltime funeral director and embalmer since 1994.

  • Kristen Bowman Stevens

    Kristen Bowman Stevens Apprentice Funeral Director/Embalmer

    Kristen is a native of Johnson City, TN. She is a graduate of Science Hill High School and also from ETSU with a B.S. in Criminal Justice and Sociology. Kristen has been in the Funeral industry since 2012 and been with Appalachian since 2016. Prior to her funeral career, Kristen worked in her family business at Bowman Jewelers for 11 years.

    Kristen has 2 wonderful children Marlee & Jaxon, and is the daughter of Tina Bowman. She is the current President of the PTA at North Side Elementary School.

    Kristen received her life insurance license in 2012 and currently does the pre-planning as our Family Service Counselor. She added Administrative Assistant to her role in 2018. In 2020 Kristen started attending John A. Gupton Institute for an Associate of Applied Science Degree.

  • Jennifer Howard

    Jennifer Howard Family Service Counselor

    Jennifer is a native of Illinois, but has lived in Northeast Tennessee since 2000. She is the mother of three beautiful children. Jennifer joined the Heritage family in 2019 and serves as a great asset to our community and families.

  • Earl  Gouge

    Earl Gouge Part-time Funeral Assistant

    Earl Gouge has been with Appalachian since 2006, a former downtown Johnson City business owner, Earl has been an asset to Appalachian Funeral Home.

  • Richie Doodle

    Richie Doodle Funeral Assistant