Darren Snowden
B: 1960-12-16
D: 2018-07-09
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Snowden, Darren
Priscilla Young
B: 1951-04-18
D: 2018-07-08
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Young, Priscilla
Trini Holmes
B: 1947-03-11
D: 2018-07-05
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Holmes, Trini
Lydia Howard
B: 1957-04-10
D: 2018-07-04
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Howard, Lydia
Martha Williams
B: 1945-10-06
D: 2018-06-30
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Williams, Martha
B: 1939-01-05
D: 2018-06-29
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B: 1956-12-27
D: 2018-06-23
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B: 1946-11-06
D: 2018-06-21
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Ella Pine
B: 1948-04-18
D: 2018-06-19
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Pine, Ella
Odie Mangram
B: 1930-07-11
D: 2018-06-15
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Mangram, Odie
Dana Davis
B: 1929-10-16
D: 2018-06-13
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Davis, Dana
Ronald Lewis
B: 1943-12-05
D: 2018-06-12
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Lewis, Ronald
Randolph, Jr. Jeffery
B: 1977-01-08
D: 2018-06-10
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Jeffery, Randolph, Jr.
B: 1961-11-04
D: 2018-06-06
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B: 1939-01-14
D: 2018-06-06
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James Davis
B: 1950-10-17
D: 2018-05-31
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Davis, James
Theodore Anderson
B: 1932-09-07
D: 2018-05-30
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Anderson, Theodore
The Honorable John Sandoz, Judge Los Angeles Superior Court
B: 1933-08-06
D: 2018-05-21
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Sandoz, Judge Los Angeles Superior Court, The Honorable John
Nadine Foster
B: 1930-06-17
D: 2018-05-13
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Foster, Nadine
B: 1925-10-04
D: 2018-05-07
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B: 1943-11-20
D: 2018-05-04
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1455 N. Fair Oaks Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91103
Phone: 626-798-8941
Fax: 626-798-0195

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Our Staff


All of our dedicated staff adhere to the highest standard of ethical practice and are committed to ensuring that all of your needs are met. Their commitment to the community and genuine compassion toward families are but a few of the characteristics that make them outstanding in their field.  We are proud to have them on our staff. (See individual staff pictures/information below)


Fred W. Valentine, President/Owner

Fred W. Valentine,  President and Co-Owner of Woods-Valentine Mortuary, is the nephew of the founder, Jimmy Woods. Fred was born in Glen Flora, Texas and moved to Pasadena, CA when he was 7 years old.  He grew up around the business and attended Pasadena Junior College, West Campus, where he earned an A.A. Degree in Business. He also graduated from the California College of Mortuary Science in 1942. Fred is a Licensed Embalmer and Funeral Director who has owned the business, along with his wife, Arzella since 1954.

Arzella J. Valentine, Vice-President/Co-Owner

Arzella J. Valentine, Vice-President and Co-Owner, is a Licensed Funeral Director and Life Insurance Agent.  She was born in Denver, Colorado and raised in Mount Olive, Arkansas.  She moved to Pasadena, California where she met and married Fred W. Valentine in 1949.  Together they purchased James Woods Mortuary from Fred's Aunt, Annie Mae Woods, and built the business we know today as Woods-Valentine Mortuary. Arzella earned an A.A. Degree from Pasadena City College and pursued her love for writing at U.C.L.A.  

Janyce L. Valentine, Manager/Co-Owner

Janyce L. Valentine  is the Manager and Assistant Vice-President of Woods-Valentine Mortuary. She is a licensed Funeral Director and Life Insurance Agent. She is the daughter of Fred and Arzella Valentine and a graduate of Pasadena High School and The Fashion Institute of Los Angeles. She has a flair for fashion and decorating and coordinated the redecorating of the mortuary for it's 75th Anniversary Celebration.  Janyce is a loving auntie and godmother, who loves jogging, traveling, and going to the movies. She also enjoys her hobby working with miniatures.

Gail A. Valentine-Taylor, Asst. Vice-President/Co-Owner

Gail Valentine Taylor  is Assistant Vice-President of Woods-Valentine Mortuary. She is a Licensed Funeral Director, Clinical Social Worker, Life Insurance Agent and Notary Public. She is the daughter of Fred and Arzella Valentine.  Gail graduated from Pasadena High School and earned a Bachelor's degree in Psychology and a Master's Degree in Social Welfare, both from U.C. Berkeley. She is a board member of the Los Angeles County  Board of Funeral Directors, and a past board member of the San Gabriel Valley Black Business Assn. and the Pasadena Foothill Y.W.C.A.  Gail is an active member of Friendship Baptist Church, Pasadena, CA.

Vannie Brown, Asst. Vice-President (Retired)

Vannie Brown  is an Assistant Vice-President at Woods-Valentine Mortuary. She is a licensed Life Insurance Agent, an experienced Funeral Service Counselor, and Cosmetologist. She is the sister of Arzella Valentine.  Vannie was born in Mount Olive, Arkansas and moved to  California upon graduation from high school.  She attended Pasadena City  College and Henrietta's Beauty School in Los  Angeles, and became a Licensed Beautician.  She worked part-time at Woods-Valentine Mortuary as a teenager and joined the staff full-time in 1970.  She retired May 31, 2010 after more than 50 years of service.  

James E. Barker, Asst. Funeral Director/Embalmer

James Barker  is a Licensed Embalmer, Assistant Funeral Director, Death Certificate Specialist and a Musician. He has worked for Woods-Valentine Mortuary for more than 25 years.  He was born in Detroit, Michigan and grew up in Los Angeles.  James has a Bachelor's degree in Science from California State University, Los Angeles.  He is a Christian who belongs to Gospel Memorial Church of God In Christ in Long Beach.  James is a devoted father, grandfather and son.  

Keith Green, Asst. Funeral Director

Keith is a Funeral Service Director, Arrangement Counselor, and the Pastor of The Living Gospel Church -Main St. assembly in Los Angeles, Ca. Mr. Green serves as a chaplain for the Los Angeles Police Department, and has been extending funeral services to the Los Angeles community for more than 20 years. He is highly recognized by many families for his remarkable insight, outstanding service, and his ability to collaborate with various groups within the community.

Leo Vaughn, Funeral Service Facilitator

Leo Vaughn  is Funeral Service Facilitator at Woods-Valentine Mortuary. He works part-time and enjoys playing the organ and photography.  Leo was born and raised in Broken Bow, Oklahoma.  He moved to California in the 1980's after his daughter, Countess Vaughn, won Star Search.  He brought the family west for fame and fortune and has not looked back.  Leo graduated from Langston University in Oklahoma with a Bachelor's degree in English.  He worked as a Teacher for 25 years in Oklahoma and California Schools. He is married to Sandra, is a proud father and grandfather and serves as the family historian.  

Valerie Williams, Administrative Assistant
Office Phone: 626798-8941
Fax: 626798-0195

Valerie grew up in Pasadena and graduated from John Muir High School, Pasadena City College and attended Cal State University at Long Beach. She retired early from a career as a Career Counselor from U.C. Irvine.  She lived 6 years in the DC area and GA., and is now a part-time Assistant Funeral Director at Woods-Valentine.  She is the loving "Nana" to Mikayla and Avery Bowe, and the proud mother of Britney Bowe and Justin Isaac.

Gemia Layne Taylor, Adminstrative Assistant

Gemia is the daughter of George and Gail (Valentine) Taylor. She works part-time as a Funeral Service Facilitator. Gemia is a recent graduate of Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, CA.  She is currently preparing to take the California Bar Exam in February of 2013.  

Gianna Lois Taylor, Administrative Assistant

Gianna is the daughter of George and Gail (Valentine) Taylor. She works part-time as a Funeral Service Facilitator. Gianna is a recent graduate of the University of Southern California.  She currently is pursuing her Masters degree in nursing at Cal State Fullerton with an emphasis in Clinical Nurse Leadership and Nurse-Midwifery.  

Lawrence Henderson, Asst. Funeral Director

Lawrence Henderson  is an Assistant Funeral Director, specializes first call services, Driver, and Auto Specialist. He is an avid collector of vintage cars. Lawrence is an active member of Victory Bible Full Gospel Baptist Church in Pasadena.

Charles Johnson, Asst. Funeral Director

Charles Johnson is a Asst. Funeral Director and Driver. He is married to Sheri Johnson and is a father of 2 children. He enjoys sports and coaches Little League. Charles attends First AME Church, Pasadena.

James Ross, Asst. Funeral Director (Retired)

James Ross is an Assistant Funeral Director and Driver. He is the brother-in-law of Fred and Arzella Valentine. He is married to Rosalia and a Wonderful father, grand father and great grandfather. He is an active member of first AME church, Pasadena. James retired in 2008 but still answers calls when needed.

James Adkins, Asst. Funeral Director (Retired)

James Adkins is a Assistant Funeral Director, Driver and the brother of Fred W. Valentine. He has worked in the business part-time since he was a child. He is a dedicated father, grandfather and member of Friendship Baptist Church Pasadena.

Rev. Jesse Chapman, Pre-Need Counselor/Chaplain

Rev. Jesse Chapman is a Pre-Need Counselor and  Life Insurance Agent with many years of experience. He is an assistant Funeral Director and our newest family counselor. He is Pastor Emeritus of Morning Star Baptist Church in Pasadena.

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