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Our Team


Our staff is comprised of dedicated and licensed professionals with the experience to answer all your questions regarding our services. Please feel free to contact any of our staff members at any time.

Lionell Butts

Lionell Butts

Funeral Director in Charge/Licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer

Lionell Butts has served Butler County for over 43 years at both Carlson & Kirby-Morris Chapels. Lionell graduated from the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science and Leon High School. He is active on the board of the El Dorado Community Concert series, Leon Senior Center, Leon Christian Church, and El Dorado Kiwanis Club. He is an avid antique collector and a fixture at most every area auction. He is well respected for his outstanding work with families in their time of need.

Chris Karn

Chris Karn

Assistant Funeral Direct & Apprentice Embalmer

Chris Karn moved to El Dorado in 2016 to pursue his funeral director and embalmer license in Kansas. He has worked with families in funeral service in Michigan for several years but came to Kansas to work with his old boss Brad Yazel at Carlson & Kirby-Morris. Chris has a wealth of experience and brings much creativity, dignity and respect to the people of Butler County. He is an Order of Arrow member of the Boy Scouts of America and an Eagle Scout.


Tierra Ehrlich

Tierra Ehrlich

Office Manager

Tierra is a graduate of Circle High School and joins our staff as the office support for the Kirby-Morris chapel. Tierra is married to her husband Darren and has two beautiful daughters.

Madi Wheeler

Administrative Assistant

Madi joined Carlson & Kirby-Morris in 2018. She is a graduate of Circle High School and is currently studying at Butler Community College. Madi is a devoted mother to 1 daughter.


Stephen Shearburn

Stephen Shearburn

Facilities and Grounds Lead

Lifelong El Dorado resident Stephen Shearburn has been with Carlson & Kirby-Morris for many years, making sure that the grounds, buildings, vehicles and landscaping around the historic funeral home buildings in downtown El Dorado are maintained. Stephen loves spending time with his three grandchildren and attending their many activities.

Frank Kratzer

Frank Kratzer

Lead Funeral Assistant / Ambassador

Frank has been an Ambassador for Carlson & Kirby-Morris for several years, and we are glad to welcome him as one of our full-time staff. He has recently retired as the Community Resource Officer for the El Dorado Police Department. Frank's position at Carlson & Kirby-Morris has him assisting with celebration of life services, making night calls, and working evening visitations. Frank enjoys participating and assisting with community festivals and parades and is a member of the Elks.

Frank is married to Kay and lives in the community of El Dorado.

Loretta Whitney

Loretta Whitney

Aftercare/ Community Outreach

Loretta Whitney has joined the staff of the Funeral Homes as the After-Care Coordinator.  She is responsible for the care of the family after the Tribute/Celebration of Life Services. 

She is a member of the First United Methodist Church in El Dorado, and serves on the volunteer team of Congregation Care Ministers. Participation with this team has given her the opportunity to resume the ministry life she experienced during her early years as the daughter of a Methodist Minister.

 Loretta is a graduate of Central Missouri University, Warrensburg, MO where she received a Master of Science Degree in Business Education.She recently retired from the field of Education where she spent nearly 30 years teaching business and computer classes in high schools in Missouri and Kansas.  She was also an adjunct faculty member for Butler Community College where she taught business classes and continues to occasionally teach computer classes for Bradford Memorial Library.  In addition to Loretta’s experience as an educator, she has been involved in the community through her participation in community based organizations including the Prairie Port Festival, Friends of the Lake, and the Hospital Auxiliary Holiday Homes Tour. Loretta is married to Darrell, a retired banker.  They have a daughter, two sons, and two grandchildren.


Telephone: 1-316-321-2260

Email: loretta.whitney@carriageservices.com


Brian Beattie

Brian Beattie

Funeral Assistant / Evening Visitation

Brian has been graciously helping Carlson Colonial Funeral Home since December 2003. You will see Brian caring for families and their friends during the evening visitations as well as some funeral services. Brian is always willing to help whenever Carlson’s needs his assistance, even after his recent heart surgery. Brian is a lifelong Kansas resident and has been a resident of El Dorado since 1974. He graduated from Washburn University in Topeka with a degree in business as well as Emporia State University with a degree in English Literature and Library Science. He served in the United States Marine Corp. Brian was a professional Librarian for 31 years. He retired from Butler Community College, where he served as Director of Library Services for the College. Brian also was an adjunct faculty member teaching college literature courses, including Children’s Literature, American Literature and English Literature. Brian is a member of Park Avenue Baptist Church, where he currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Deacons; a member of Rotary Club of El Dorado, where he served as a past president; and a life member of Delta Sigma Pi National business Fraternity. His past memberships include Kansas Library Association, where he was a past president, Mountain Plains Library Association and the American Library Association.

Brian is married to Sue, a retired faculty member of Butler Community College. They have one daughter, three grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Debbie Hall

Debbie Hall

Ambassador

Debbie joined Kirby-Morris in 2009; she helps with services and visitations. Debbie also helps with community outreach and recognition. She is retired from 30 years in education, serving 28 of those years at Grandview Elementary. She now works at Oil Hill Elementary. Debbie is a member of Trinity United Methodist Church and is married to David, who works for the Butler County Sheriff's Department. She has two sons, Josh (and his wife Amy) and Justin, and two grandchildren, Paxton and Harper Ellison.

Larry Maus

Larry Maus

Funeral Assistant / Evening Visitation

Larry has been caring for families during visitation hours and at services since early 2000. Larry is always willing to assist whenever the staff or the families he serves asks and never hesitates to make sure the job is done correctly. Larry is the President of the nighttime Kiwanis Club in El Dorado and enjoys singing weekly at the Park Avenue Baptist Church. He also participates in Butler 2000, the Water Festival at BCC, and BCC Life Enrichment. His avid hobbies include working with wood, repairing electronics, and teaching a Sunday School class for young people in his church.

Larry is married to Lorraine, retired third grade teacher, and has two grown children.

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