David Lee Hernandez, Jr has been an embalmer and funeral director since 2004 but his interest in funeral service started at a young age. Influenced by his mother Debora, who began a second career working in a cemetery, he spent his summer breaks going to work with his mother in various roles around the grounds.
Immediately after high school he decided to pursue funeral service and become a funeral director in New Jersey. He began his internship at Waitt Funeral Home. Shortly after becoming a funeral director, the firm he worked at was purchased, and after becoming licensed he began managing the bookkeeping, purchasing/ordering and staffing of the funeral home.
Call volume at Waitt Funeral Home began to increase and ownership decided to build a branch location in neighboring Old Bridge Township. David was responsible for the design of the building and was the project manager throughout construction. Old Bridge Funeral Home opened in May of 2007. Although David was in a management capacity, he grew frustrated with ownership that cared more about revenue and less about families and the team members in the locations.
Less than two years later the opportunity arose to purchase the two firms he started his career at and in 2009, David completed the purchase of Waitt Funeral Home and Old Bridge Funeral Home, completing a goal and dream of owning both funeral homes.
As David and his management began to implement families-first service, best practices, and team member development; the firms continued to grow in call volume organically. After three years of ownership, property was purchased for another buildout of a new funeral home to service the Jersey Shore. This began Jersey Memorial Group and the growth that would continue today across three states with holdings of 11 funeral homes, 2 cemeteries including combination locations, an insurance agency, and multiple service brands to reach local families.
"You can’t grow faster than the good people you have. Our core philosophy for growth both organically and through acquisition is great people.”
By focusing on the development of our team we can maintain our high standards of family service and sustainable growth. By selecting firms whose ownership and team share the same values and culture, David and the Jersey Memorial Group team can provide the flexibility owners decision, and staff development that your team desires and financial and managerial experience that have made us a leading name in funeral service.