About Us | McVeigh Funeral Home, Inc.

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 firm has been the focus of four generations of the McVeigh family. When William C. McVeigh passed his licensing exam in 1901, he came to work alongside then current owners of the John Harrigan General Furnishing Undertakers, Harvey, Daniel and Joseph Harrigan. It was a long-established firm that was in charge in August of 1885 when the body of America’s 18th President, Ulysses S. Grant was brought to the State Capital and streets of Albany for funeral services.

When the last of the Harrigan’s passed away in 1938, McVeigh changed the name of the establishment to reflect the new ownership, and moved the business to 208 North Allen Street, off Central Ave. He was not at the helm long, as he too passed away; in 1947, his son, William J. McVeigh succeeded to operate the family firm. This marked the second generation.

Some 11 years later, he was joined by a representative of the third generation, his son William E. McVeigh. They operated the business together, overseeing two major expansions of the facilities and growing their reputation of dedicated, sincere, and family’s- first service to the population of the Albany area.

The decade of the 1980’s brought more changes; both in the staff and facilities. William E. McVeigh was proud to bring his daughters, Kristin and Laurel into the firm as licensed funeral directors. These two new members represent the fourth generation of the McVeigh family to carry on the family tradition of providing funeral services to the good people of the Albany area. And later on, Kristin’s husband, David A. Parente joined the firm as a licensed funeral director. Under the watchful eye of the McVeigh family, the funeral home continues to steadfastly serve the community, drawing upon generations of funeral experience, and always guided by the steady hand of the funeral home’s rich and abiding history. .

“The hallmark of our firm has been growth; but in and of itself that is not remarkable. What is worthy of comment is that we have managed this tremendous growth over the span of 150 years without losing sight of our firm’s foundations of professionalism and personal service. We have remained independent, and completely committed to serving our community.” ~ William E. McVeigh

Our Valued Staff

Kristin McVeigh-Parente

Kristin McVeigh-Parente, President

Shortly after graduating from Siena College in 1982, Kristin informed her father she was interested in returning to school to earn her license in funeral directing. She would be the fourth generation of McVeigh’s to enter the family business.

Prior to graduating from Siena in 1982, Kristin attended St. Teresa of Avila School in Albany and went on to graduate from Academy of the Holy Names in 1979. She married David Parente in 1993 and he too joined the firm. They have three treasured children; Anthony, Kyla and Eva.

Kristin was an adjunct faculty member at Hudson Valley Community College’s mortuary science department. She is a past president of the Albany Lions Club and a former board member of Camary Statewide Services. She was a longtime member of the board of Living Resources, and is former president of the Capital District Funeral Directors Association.

David  Parente

David Parente, Vice President & Funeral Director

David has extensive experience as a funeral service professional, serving Albany area families for over 35 years. He has been with the McVeigh Funeral Home for the better part of those years, and for many years he has served ownership in the firm as Vice President.

His curriculum vita includes Canisius College, Hudson Valley Community College, and the prestigious, internationally-renowned Fountain National Academy of Professional Embalming Skills.

David is very active in related business associations, as well as within the wider community. He currently serves as President of the Capital District Funeral Directors Association; Trustee and Parish Council Member and Past President of Blessed Sacrament Church, Albany; Board Member and Vice President of The Community Hospice Foundation; Hudson Valley Community College Morturary Science Program Advisory Board Member; Chairman of the Board of Albany’s Central Ave. Business Improvement District; and the City of Albany's Capitalize Albany Corporation.

David also serves on the New York State Funeral Directors (NYSFDA) Board of Directors for Directors Choice Credit Union (DCCU); NYSFDA Funeral Directors Support Services (FDSS); he serves as a Trustee of NYSFDA PrePlan {a New York Trust administered for NYSFDA by Funeral Director Support Services, Inc.a New York Corp.}; and he is chairman for NYSFDA's Ethics Committee.

"Living in the Capital Region has been a privilege for me, and especially serving New York's great Capital City.....Albany"

William E. McVeigh

William E. McVeigh, Funeral Director

Born in Albany, Bill has been a lifelong resident of the city. He is a graduate of Blessed Sacrament Church School, Christian Brothers Academy, Holy Cross College and Simmons School of Funeral Directing.

He married the former Sheila Butler in 1956. Bill entered the Naval Reserve and was stationed in Norfolk, VA. He returned to Albany in 1958 and joined his father as the third generation of funeral directors at McVeigh Funeral Home.

Bill and Sheila have four children; William E. McVeigh, Jr., a resident of Living Resources; Brian J. McVeigh PhD, former professor of Anthropology at Tucson AZ; Kristin McVeigh Parente and Laurel McVeigh Gent.

Bill has moved into a more senior and advisory role in the funeral home the past few years, but remains active and plays a vital role as the funeral home moves forward.

Brian  Garney

Brian Garney, Funeral Director

Brian is originally from Schuylerville, NY where he graduated from high school in 1996. He received his degree in Mortuary Science in 1999 from State University of New York at Canton. While in college, he worked in funeral service to match his classroom theory with real life application. He came to the McVeigh Funeral Home in October of 1999 to serve his residency, and continues presently as a licensed funeral director. In 2008, Brian completed training in the prestigious Fountain National Academy of Professional Embalming Skills. The McVeigh family is proud to call Brian a member of their staff.

Dawn M. Pierce

Dawn M. Pierce

Dawn joined the McVeigh Funeral Home in September 1997 after retiring from a 39 year career in the insurance industry. She has known the McVeigh family for a long time and was happy to join the firm when offered the opportunity. She is the proud mother of three and grandmother also of three. Her interests include traveling, gardening, reading, rooting for the Boston Red Sox and visiting casinos now and then. Dawn recently moved to part-time work in the funeral home, so she can enjoy precious time with her family.

Terry  Ulion-Funeral Assistant

Terry Ulion-Funeral Assistant

Terry Ulion has been married to his wonderful wife, Ann for over 36 years. They have a beautiful daughter, Beth, who graduated from SUNY College of Environmental Science & Forestry in 2007.

Terry and Ann both retired in 1996 after 35 years with the Bethlehem Central School District. And interestingly, they began their teaching careers on the same day, and retired from those careers on the same day!

Terry was the recipient of Fulbright-Hayes Fellowships to Egypt in 1987 and Brazil in 1993. He is a part-time consultant and evaluator for College Board of Princeton, NJ. And he recently completed a distinguished career as a New York State Football Official. Over his 30 year career officiating football in Section II, Terry was selected to work numerous Super bowls, Regional games, seven State semi-finals and two NYSPHSAS Championships in the Carrier Dome at Syracuse University.

Ed  Prince-Funeral Assistant

Ed Prince-Funeral Assistant

Ed Prince has been married to his beautiful wife Peggy Valente for over 49 years. He considers himself blessed to have seven wonderful children, and 12 very special grandchildren. He graduated from (yet) another of Albany’s great schools, St. Joseph’s Academy in Arbor Hill, and went on to have a long and successful career with Niagara Mohawk. Ed’s hobbies include baseball, the New York Giants, fishing, and an occasional trip to the casinos! He was involved for over 15 years with the West Albany Little League, and was a past president. These days he keeps busy spending time with his family, and serving his parish of Christ Our Light Catholic Church. Ed is a Trustee of the parish and past president of the Pastoral Council, while also serving on the Building & Grounds Committee and the Social Committee. Ed has also been known to tell a joke or two! Oh, and did we mention that he is a New York Giants fan?

Philip  Foust-Funeral Assistant

Philip Foust-Funeral Assistant

Philip Foust is married to Doreen Bergmann Foust and step father and friend to Doreen’s daughters Tara and Patti. He is a proud grandpa to Shelby, Matthew and Aiden. Phil has been one of Rensselaer’s bravest, serving on the Fire Department for over 26 years. And in March of 2008 Phil was elevated to Chief of the Rensselaer Fire Department. Chief Phil retired from that position in 2014. He has been affiliated with the funeral business for over 30 years, not just with the McVeigh Funeral Home, but with his family’s legendary business, Foust Livery Service.

Bill  Miles-Funeral Assistant

Bill Miles-Funeral Assistant

Bill Miles, Sr. was born and raised in Albany. After graduating from school, he served in the US Navy from 1959 until 1966. Bill has great memories of his Navy days, and indeed served during some historic moments in our Country’s history, including the Cuban Missile Crisis and NASA’s Mercury Program. In fact, Bill was serving aboard the USS Nipmuc in the carrier group that was tasked with recovering the first American in Space, Alan Shepherd Jr. and his Freedom-7 capsule. He and his wife Maryann Smith have been married for over 50 years, and have 5 wonderful children and 6 beautiful grandchildren. Bill worked for 12 years as an Electrical Industrial Mechanic, and then 23 years for Blessed Sacrament Church in Albany. He retired from his full time job at the parish in 2003, but remains a devoted communicant, member of the Holy Names Society, and occasional consultant for building and grounds needs for the church and school.

Vincent J. Perry-Funeral Assistant

Vincent J. Perry-Funeral Assistant

Vince Perry, Sr., has been happily married for over 43 years to Bonita Lonergan, and they have six very successful children and eleven beautiful grandchildren. He graduated from Albany High School in 1951 and served his Country honorably in the US Navy during the Korean War. In fact, his son Vince, Jr continues the family's Naval tradition by having served as the Auxiliary Officer on the USS Harry S. Truman Aircraft Carrier in Norfolk, VA. Vince owned and operated Mr. Perry’s Hair Fashions in Loudonville for over 35 years. When asked about the most famous customer he took care of in the Salon over those 35 years, he is quick to say , “well of course, that would have to be a beautiful and talented actress who starred on As the World Turns for five years and is often seen on local television commercials, Yvonne Perry, my daughter!”

Sarah Quackenbush

Sarah Quackenbush, Office Manager

Sarah graduated from the Academy of the Holy Names in 1995 and received her associates degree from Mildred Elley Business School.

Sarah joined the McVeigh Funeral Home June of 2010

She currently lives in Latham with her husband Grady and their two children Jakob and Sophia.

She is a board member with North Colonie Pop Warner. She enjoys spending her time watching her children participate in their numerous activities.

At the funeral home, David and Kristin consider Sarah an invaluable and key member of their staff and consider her a joy to work with on the administrative side of the the desk.

Edward Galka

Edward Galka, Funeral Director

Ed grew up in Colonie and graduated from Colonie High School in 2002. He started in Funeral Service in 2000, and realized early on this would be his life's calling.

Edward is a graduate of Hudson Valley Community College’s Mortuary Science program class of 2014. He became a Licensed New York State Funeral Director in 2015.

In addition to his work at the funeral home, he is an active board member of the Polish American Citizen’s Club and the Capital District Umpire Association. Ed is a communicant of St. Pius X Church.

He truly enjoys spending his free time with his wife Michelle (Garrow) Galka.

Gary Ahl

Gary Ahl, Funeral Assistant

Gary Ahl has been married to his wife Regina for 41 terrific years. He and Regina have been blessed with 4 children and 7 grandchildren.

Gary graduated from from Colonie Central High School in 1970. He and Regina are both lifelong residents of Colonie. Gary was self employed for 38 years as owner-operator of West Albany Core Exchange, an automotive recycling business. He also volunteered for 22 years with the West Albany Youth Baseball/Softball League, serving 6 years as president.

Gary joined the staff at McVeigh Funeral Home in 2016.

Gerry Forenzo

Gerry Forenzo, Funeral Assistant

Jerry Forenzo is a life long resident of the Town of Colonie. He graduated from Colonie High School in 1968 and served the Army Reserves from 1969 – 1975.

Jerry worked for many years managing meat departments at the Star Supermarkets on Wolf Road and in Latham. As a result of his commitment to customer service, and friendly demeanor, Jerry developed a group of loyal customers who followed him to Hannaford Supermarket, in 1995.

In 2002, Jerry changed careers and joined the staff at St. Pius X, in Loudonville, as Superintendent of Building & Grounds. As a parishioner for many years, this position was more than a “job”. His selfless service to the St. Pius X community continues today in spite of his retirement in 2015.

Married to Diane Santandrea for 45 years, they enjoy spending time with their four children and 8 grandchildren.

When not with his family, Jerry’s favorite past time is playing golf.

Jerry joined the McVeigh staff in 2015, and he quickly became a valuable member of their staff.