Edward R. Good
It was 1948 when Edward Good and his wife Rhea bought the Maple’s Tea Room at 171 King Street South. The couple raised their three sons upstairs and operated the Edward R. Good Funeral Home downstairs.
With only thirty-two funerals during that first year, it was a difficult beginning for the business. It started as a two-person operation, with Ed handling the funeral arrangements while Rhea looked after the flowers, answered the telephone and served as secretary.
Now, more than sixty years later, the business handles hundreds of funerals every year and is proud to number among the few homes that are still family owned. In the early years, Good rented a hearse and other cars from another funeral home. Today the business has its own funeral coach, limousine and a fleet of cars.
Good was encouraged to become a funeral director by his father, a traveling Depression-era furniture salesman. The elder Good had visited many furniture store owners in small towns who also ran funeral parlours.
While the Good family lived above the business they were at the beck and call of not only clients, but of community organizations that needed help or perhaps the loan of “a couple dozen chairs” for a meeting.
The business thrived and the original structure has been through ten renovations or additions. In 1953 Edward Good bought the house next door and converted it first into apartments and then into a parking lot. 1959 saw the building of a chapel, and a major expansion happened in 1988 with the addition of a reception room. In 1994 he purchased the historic Kuntz house next to the funeral home. Along with the physical changes, services have also evolved. The innovative People Needing People bereavement groups are run at little or no cost to families who are struggling with the loss of a loved one.
With his business thriving Good took on another challenge - serving as the Member of Provincial Parliament for Waterloo North for ten consecutive years starting in 1967. After Good died in 2002 at the age of eighty-three he was remembered as a “very effective spokesman on all provincial issues, and was very well-respected by the people in all parties.”
His long-time business partner, Jim Erb praised Good as a man of integrity. “He was a gentleman through and through, in every aspect of his life, in the way he greeted people, responded to people and respected people.”
Edward Good’s son Paul, now retired, was also an owner and funeral director with the Erb & Good Family Funeral Home. And, in keeping with the family tradition, Jim Erb’s son David is a funeral director, partner and the general manager.
Dealing with grieving people is a difficult career choice but Good once said, “It is gratifying when people come back to thank you and you know that you have helped them over a difficult time.”
Photo courtesy of the Kitchener-Waterloo Record Photographic Negative Collection, University of Waterloo Library
Edward R. Good (Waterloo 150 Profile)
- Gallagher, Beth, Author
- Media Type
- To celebrate Waterloo's 150th anniversary, the Waterloo Public Library published a book called "Profiles from the Past, Faces of the Future." This book featured 150 profiles of people who helped make Waterloo what it is today. This is the digitized profile for Edward R. Good.
- Please visit the Waterloo Public Library to enquire about physical copies of "Profiles from the Past, Faces of the Future."
The Waterloo 150 project was funded by a grant from the Waterloo Regional Heritage Foundation. Beth Gallagher wrote the profiles with the assistance of many research volunteers. Information for the profiles was gathered from a variety of sources from the community and the Ellis Little Local History Room. Notable sources include the Ellis Little Papers, newspaper clippings, local magazines and books.
- Place of Publication
- Waterloo, Ontario
- Date of Publication
- Personal Name(s)
- Good, Edward ; Good, Rhea ; Good, Paul
- Corporate Name(s)
- Maple's Tea Room ; Erb and Good Funeral Homes
- Language of Item
- Geographic Coverage
Latitude: 43.4668 Longitude: -80.51639
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