History and Staff

Greenlawn Memorial Park has been providing for the needs of families since 1937.  We are proud of the reputation we have established over more than 80 years of service to our community.

From the beginning, Greenlawn has endeavored to provide only the finest in service and facilities for families in their time of need.  An early Greenlawn brochure stated, “We envision a future of continuous growth, increasing beauty and loveliness.  Our past, successful as it has been, is only our ‘prologue’.”

The first thing you will notice upon entering the grounds at Greenlawn is the natural beauty of dogwoods and crepe myrtle as well as centuries old live oaks and other mature trees of various species.  The pond at the center of the memorial park serves as a focal point for our annual interdenominational Easter Sunrise Service which has been a Greenlawn tradition for over 50 years.

For those families who prefer other than in-ground interment, our Mausoleum provides the ultimate in above-ground entombment.  Constructed of the finest domestic and imported marble, the Mausoleum was the first in the Columbia area and is still unmatched in its richness of detail and striking beauty.  The Mausoleum Chapel, constructed as a wing of the mausoleum itself, is available for services in conjunction with funerals at Greenlawn.  Niches for cremation urns are an integral part of the mausoleum, an excellent choice for a permanent memorialization.

A key element in our success in providing unsurpassed service through the years has been our ability to make arrangements for many families before the time of need.  Approximately ninety percent of funerals at Greenlawn during recent years have been arranged prior to the death of the family member helping them avoid the stress of last minute planning.  Our staff stands ready to assist at any time, but we strongly recommend that arrangements be made in advance for the sake of your family and your own peace of mind.

In May of 1998, our services expanded to include a conveniently located funeral home facility to serve families all over the Midlands.  Thompson Funeral Home is conveniently located adjacent to Greenlawn Memorial Park on Leesburg Road and is also convenient to Fort Jackson, just one exit north on Interstate 77.  Our funeral home offers a variety of funeral options including both traditional options as well as cremation.  It is our desire to make every funeral or memorial service a personal time of remembrance to capture, share and preserve your special memories of life.

At Greenlawn, we are proud of our pioneering efforts in making special packages available for veterans of the Armed Forces of the United States.  Special discounts for veterans are just one of the ways we recognize the contributions of those who have served our country.  Considerable savings can also be realized for non-veterans as well for arrangements made prior to the time of need.

Our Staff’s Dedication to Respectful Care

A funeral, or memorial service, should provide family members and loved ones with the chance to reflect, remember, and celebrate a life well-lived. At null, our goal is to create exceptional services and experiences that fulfill the wishes of your loved one. Our experienced Funeral Directors provide guidance on the crucial first steps toward healing.

Brenda Trafficanti
Administrative Assistant

Brenda has been employed at Thompson Funeral Home since 2004. She is an active member at Temple Baptist Church. She was blessed with a wonderful son, Jonathan, who passed away in 2010.



Teresa Higgins
Administrative Assistant

Teresa joined the cemetery staff in June of 2016. She comes from a very large local family and is a graduate of Lower Richland High School. Teresa recently returned to Columbia from many years in Boca Raton, Florida, where she devoted her life to customer service through various administrative services including municipal, medical and multiple lines of insurance. As a marker specialist, Teresa prides herself in assisting with the creation of a lasting memorial to your loved one.

Teresa and her husband, Patrick, are the proud parents of one daughter, two sons and five grandchildren, who are the light of her life. In her spare time, she likes to spend time with her family and friends, shop and cheer on her beloved Gamecocks!!

"What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world remains and is immortal. - Albert Pine"



Carol Trakas
Administrative Assistant

Carol has been a part of the Greenlawn Memorial Park team for over 20 years. She serves as an administrative assistant at Thompson Funeral Home at Greenlawn Memorial Park and can be found helping others on a daily basis. She truly enjoys her work and finds tremendous satisfaction in assisting families and supporting her coworkers.

Carol has spent most of her life in Southeast Columbia. She has one son and enjoys meeting people from all walks of life. Carol has a heart for animals and especially treasures time with her two miniature poodles and three cats.



Joe Morris
Sales Manager

Joe was born in Boston MA and has lived in MD,PA,VA and now SC. Joe has two daughters and two grandchildren. Joe has been in the death care industry for twelve years and loves to help families and build lasting relationships. Outside of work Joe likes to play golf, mountain bike, hike and spend time with his family.



Mersini Chavis
Family Service Advisor

Mersini joined the cemetery staff in February, 2019. She was born in El Paso, Texas and graduated from Midlands Technical College with an associate degree in criminal justice. She is married and has one daughter, Alyssia, and is a member of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church.

Mersini truly loves helping people. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends and her singing golden retriever, named Hudson. Mersini also loves watching college football and pulling for her two favorite teams, the Texas Longhorns and the Gamecocks!



Rachel Lucas
Family Service Advisor

Rachel was born and raised in Columbia, SC, and is grateful to have joined the Thompson/Greenlawn family in September of 2017. She graduated from Cardinal Newman High School, and received a Bachelor in Social Work degree from Columbia College. She has two daughters, Madison and Taylor, and is a member of Shandon Baptist Church.



Breanna Forrester
​Family Service Advisor

Breanna, a native of Columbia, joined the Thompson Funeral Home and Greenlawn Memorial Park team in August, 2018.  In her role as a Family Service Advisor, Breanna finds assisting and supporting families to be tremendously fulfilling and rewarding.  She especially enjoys being able to help make a difficult time a bit easier for the families she is privileged to serve. 

In her free time, Breanna can be found playing with her fabulous black Labrador, Mia, and spending time with family and friends.



Sherry Felder-Allen
Family Service Advisor

Sherry began her career as a cemetery counselor in 2011. She discovered that taking care of people in their time of need and assisting with their preparations brings her great satisfaction and enjoyment. In previous years, she worked in sales, but feels most passionate about her position as a Family Service Advisor.

Sherry is a native of Sumter and graduated from Sumter High School.  She continued her education at DeVry University in Decatur, Georgia and at Central Carolina Technical College, where she studied computer technology.

Sherry is the mother of two, Aliyah and Alexandria, and also grandmother of two, Khloe and Kaveyah. In her spare time she enjoys crafting for others.



Tonya Brazier
Office Manager - Greenlawn Memorial Park

Tonya grew up in Columbia, SC and attended AC Flora High School. Tonya and her husband, Ray, currently reside in Pelion, SC. Together Tonya and Ray have 2 children, 3 step-children and several grandchildren. Tonya attends and is an active member of the West Columbia First Church of the Nazarene.

Tonya has been a passionate cemetery professional for 23 years, with the majority of her career being at both Greenlawn Memorial Park and Woodridge Memorial Park. Tonya really enjoys being a part of a great team of professionals who are caring and passionate about serving and assisting families.
Tonya enjoys being involved in the community and spending time with her family.