History & Staff

At Hankins & Whittington Funeral Service, we have provided customizable memorial services for many years. Personalized service options allow you to honor your loved ones in a way that is both meaningful and healing. We hope to provide support and caring while delivering memorial services that celebrate life and help families find the peace they deserve.
If you’re seeking an honorable celebration of life in Charlotte and the surrounding areas, we invite you to learn more about where we came from and the dedicated people behind our work.

A History of Caring

Hankins & Whittington
Dilworth Chapel

The history of Hankins & Whittington – Dilworth Chapel dates back to 1946 when Irvin W. Hankins and James B. Whittington were discharged from the military. Having served together during World War II, they returned to Charlotte and immediately resumed their positions with Crouch Funeral Home, which they then purchased in August of 1946. In 1949, they moved to a larger location at 1714 South Boulevard and changed the name to Hankins & Whittington Funeral Directors.

In March 1963, they moved to the present location at 1111 East Boulevard after purchasing the property from St. Luke’s Lutheran Church. The former church was renovated and adapted for use as a funeral home. Hankins & Whittington has since grown into one of the leading funeral service providers in North Carolina, thanks to the unselfish dedication of Irvin Hankins and Jim Whittington. Through the years, the men also served the community in various civic and church activities, including city government and Little League Baseball. The desire of Mr. Hankins and Mr. Whittington to serve the people of the greater Charlotte area in a professional and personal manner has always remained the focus of our staff.

Over time, the facilities have continually been updated to create an atmosphere that is both warm and inviting. The chapel, built in the early 1930’s, retains the charm of stained glass, a vaulted ceiling, and brick walls. Upon entering the lobby, guests are greeted with a beautifully appointed room accented by a fireplace. Visitation rooms are also tastefully decorated and colorful. However, more important than the beauty of our building is the manner in which our staff serves the families who pass through our doors. Attention to detail and encouragement of meaningful and creative services has become our hallmark.

After more than 70 years of service, we appreciate the reputation we have established with the people of Charlotte – "Celebrating Memories Since 1946”

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 Hankins & Whittington, 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.

Emma Hale
Location Leader

Emma has a heart for service and has been given the opportunity serve friends and family members ever since she could remember. After a near death experience in 2007, she found her calling to be a funeral director. A graduate of Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service in Decatur, GA, Emma has been a licensed funeral director and embalmer in Virginia, North and South Carolina, and Georgia.

“Having been through the experience of loss myself when my father passed away,” she says, “I find that I can empathize with the stress and pain with which the family is dealing. I may not know how they feel, but my aim is to bring them comfort, knowing I’ve walked a similar road.”

When not serving families, she enjoys spending time with her husband, Carson and their two dog children, Cal and Pax, and lives a few blocks from the funeral home.

Joel Blady
Funeral Director

Charlotte’s only Jewish funeral director, Joel has been a funeral service licensee since 1984 and on the staff of Hankins & Whittington since 2004. “I try to ensure that each family receives the care and compassion that everyone deserves,” he says. “It is very rewarding to help people through their time of loss and grief.”

Christopher Halsey
Funeral Director

Chris, originally from outside Cleveland, OH, has called the Carolinas home for over 18 years. 

His interest for funeral services began at the age 5, after attending the funeral of his Great-Grandmother, even though he did not fully understand loss and grief at the time, he never forgot the impact that the funeral directors at his hometown funeral home provided.

A passion for people, demonstrating human compassion, helping people through the most difficult times and providing service from the heart led Chris to the aviation industry

With the opportunity to travel the world and make an impact in the lives of those he served.

After experiencing the personal loss of several close family members and friends in a short period of time, Chris received his wake-up call and wanted to finally give back to others in their time of loss.  He retired from the aviation industry after 30 years and begin to write his second chapter in life.

Chris has been in the funeral industry since 2016 and graduated from Fayetteville Technical Community College with an Associates of Applied Science Degree in Funeral Service.  He is a Licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer in North Carolina and Florida and also a Licensed Funeral Director in South Carolina. Chris is a Certified Crematory Operator and Grief Recovery Specialist.

Chris serves the community participating in “Out the Darkness” walks for suicide awareness and prevention, Relay for Life, and Wings of Autism.

Chris’ mission is to give respect and honor to those who pass on, compassion to those left behind, and hope to all who seek it.  His commitment is to provide human compassion and comfort to each grieving family he serves by designing personalized and memorable life celebrations and creating moments that matter.

Peter Calcutta
Director of Advanced Planning

Peter was born in Staten Island, NY and grew up at the "Jersey Shore". Before moving to North Carolina in 2016, he and his family lived in North Jersey.  Peter realized that funeral service was his “calling” at a young age after the death of his grandmother and began his career in funeral service in 1991.  Peter is a dedicated husband and father of three.  In his free time he enjoys going fishing, watching TV and spending as much time as he can with his family.  

Peggy McManus
Funeral Administrator

Peggy grew up in Charlotte and graduated from Garinger High School.  She retired from Mecklenburg County Department of Social Services after over 22 years of service and became the receptionist at Temple Beth El in 2008.  Peggy joined the staff of Hankins & Whittington in January, 2016 as a weekend administrative assistant and became Funeral Administrator in August, 2017.

Peggy enjoys serving families.  “I know how it feels to be the person walking through our doors, and I can offer them comfort that they are not alone,” she says.

Peggy is active in the Charlotte Community by ushering at Actor’s Theatre and at the Halton Theatre at CPCC.  She also participates in the Charlotte Hadassah Chapter’s fundraiser, Celebrate the TaTa’s.