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

Jim O'Connor of Joliet married Katherine Strubbe of Crystal Lake and they opened the funeral home in its present location in December, 1951. They raised their three children there: James (Karen Allen) O'Connor of Hampshire, Kathy (Jim) Carr of Woodstock and the late Edward.

For nearly 20 years the O'Connor Funeral Home provided the community with ambulance service until the fire department assumed the role.

During the early 1980s, Jim's health dictated that he get some help, and he asked Walter Leucht of Fredrick Funeral Home in Hampshire to be of assistance. This began Walter's affiliation with the funeral home in Huntley and he became responsible for all embalming and service-related needs in 1984. In 1986, Jim asked Walter to be his partner and they continued this agreement until 1990 when Mr. O'Connor passed away. Walter purchased the remaining stock and was proud to continue Jim's passion for quality, dependable funeral services.

As the community began to develop it became very apparent that Walter was going to need some assistance. This presented an opportunity for Dale Tegtman of Hampshire (whom Walter had hired as a teenager to cut his grass) to become a full time partner in the funeral home in October 2002.

On January 1, 2022, Dale took full ownership of James A. O'Connor Funeral Home and Fredrick Funeral Home in Hampshire. He has brought his sons, Luke and Nick into the business and they are currently doing their apprenticeship at both funeral homes.

They continue their reputation for excellence and distinctive funeral service to their community. They acknowledge that their superior service will make friendships with families for generations to come. They have prided themselves on being available and easy to talk to. We welcome any and all questions regarding our services or for any expert advice. We just want to be a good coach.

Our Valued Staff

  • Dale Patrick Tegtman

    Dale Patrick Tegtman, Owner - Funeral Director

    Dale graduated from Hampshire High School in 1983. Received Associates Degree in Mortuary Science from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale in 1985. Started serving an apprenticeship for Staab Funeral Home in Springfield in 1986 and became a full-time funeral director and embalmer at Staab's, working there for six years. He returned to the area in 1991 taking a position with Querhammer Funeral Home in Crystal Lake and Marengo Union Funeral Home until 2002. In October 2002, he had the distinct honor of becoming partners with Walter Leucht, the man responsible for the privilege of working in this industry. Walt retired on Dec. 31, 2021 and Dale and Claire are now the proud owners of Fredrick Funeral Home in Hampshire and James A. O'Connor Funeral Home in Huntley.Dale married Claire Ann Vonnahme of Springfield. Dale and Claire have three beautiful children--Luke, and twins, Ella Ann and Nicholas. As a member of St. Mary Catholic Church, you can find Dale ushering at 10:30 Mass. Also a member of the Knights of Columbus Council 11666. It is an honor and privilege for our family to serve the Huntley community.

  • Erika Freund

    Erika Freund, Funeral Director

    Erika M. Freund is a licensed Funeral Director/Embalmer. She graduated from Marengo-Union Community High School in 1996 and went on to Southern Illinois University, Carbondale where she graduated with an Associate’s Degree in Applied Science in 1998 and continued her education at SIUC to receive her Bachelor's Degree in Mortuary Science and Funeral Service in 1999. She has actively worked in Funeral Service since the age of 16, where she learned how to be kind, caring, and compassionate while in a very demanding profession. Under the wings of her esteemed mentors, John L. Freund and Dale P. Tegtman, she found her place in funeral service and has served families to the best of her ability during one of the most difficult times in their life. Erika lives in Belvidere with her husband, Jason, and their three children. She can be reached by calling either Fredrick Funeral Home, Hampshire, or James A. O’Connor Funeral Home, Huntley.

  • Luke Patrick Tegtman

    Luke Patrick Tegtman, Apprentice

    Luke is a 2020 graduate of Whitewater and a 2021 graduate of DMACC with a degree in Mortuary Science. He has passed his boards and is currently doing his apprenticeship at both funeral homes to receive his Funeral Director and Embalmer license.

  • Nicholas Tegtman

    Nicholas Tegtman, Student Apprentice

    Nick is Dale's youngest son and has recently graduated from SIU's mortuary program. He is currently working as an apprentice at both funeral homes.

  • Diane Schiffer

    Diane Schiffer, Office Manager

    Diane is Dale's sister and started in August of 2006 as a part-time employee working at the funeral home on the weekends and at visitations. In 2012 she became the Office Manager and also does some office work for Fredrick Funeral Home in Hampshire. Diane and her husband Tom have been married for 39 years and have three children. She enjoys family get-togethers and traveling.

  • Tom Schiffer

    Tom Schiffer, Funeral Assistant

    Tom is Diane's husband. He started helping at both O'Connor and Fredrick Funeral Homes about 3 years ago. Tom is a fourth-degree Knights of Columbus and is very involved in church activities. He also enjoys traveling and hiking.