The Story of West Gate
Learn our story, from the beginning...
If you are dedicated, if you persevere, if you have patience and if you have the faith of a mustard seed, then you can realize THE VISION. That’s what the owners of West Gate Funeral Home did. The youngest son of George F. West, Sr. and Artimese West. James T. West and his wife Sharon, opened WEST GATE FUNERAL HOME on July 4, 2013. This is the same building that was the West Funeral Home for decades, a business that his parents started in 1951. Being back in the place where he learned the business is very humbling.
As a young boy, James remembers watching his father on the steps of the funeral home waving as the cars passed by, making a connection with the community. His father made sure the building was clean and the grounds kept neat. Even as a young boy, James was absorbing the business skills and work ethics his dad possessed. He taught James that “your word is your bond.” From his mother, Artimese, James acquired heartfelt compassion and customer service skills. All of these attributes would come in handy for the journey he and his wife were about to embark on.
After the family business closed in 2008, James felt a great loss that caused hurt and pain. He stopped coming down N. Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. Street where the building was located. As time passed, THE VISION was developing. One day, he purposely drove down N. Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. Street and entered the property at 409 N. Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. Street. James stood at the back door of the funeral home. At that moment, the only thing that came to mind was his dad’s favorite Psalm: Psalm 23. He started reciting…“The Lord is My Shepherd, I shall not want”… After he finished reciting the scripture, James looked up and said, “Lord, if this is what you want me to do, make a way.” He prayed and asked for guidance. Doors begin to open. At this point, he was realizing THE VISION and knew he had a job to do.
In 2011, he was able to purchase the property. A lot of motivation to complete the building came from his mother. This was the place where she dedicated all of her life’s work. James, Sharon, and others slowly worked to renovate the building, and when James’ mother, Artimese, died on July 4, 2013, they were ready to begin A New Chapter. WEST GATE FUNERAL HOME was established. This would be their first service. “Dear” gave him a “great Grand Opening.”
After being in business for 5 years, James saw an opportunity to open a branch of West Gate Funeral Home in Fayette. Our hope was to offer compassionate services to families in that area. We were blessed to open the Fayette Branch in 2017. Since the opening, we have had the honor and privilege to "Continue the Legacy".
As THE VISION becomes “crystal clear, the West Family is striving to be servants of the community and honor the lives of families’ loved ones as they CONTINUE “THE LEGACY OF CARE”!