History of Wilbert Burial Vault of Greenville

Roy C. Young purchased Wilbert of Greenville in 1947. Seven decades later, his family still proudly owns and operates the franchise. Named as an "Ultimate Service Provider", Wilbert Burial Vault of Greenville has earned the highest level of achievement awarded to a franchise for 10 years in a row.

Roy C. Young started his career as a police officer in Atlanta, GA. After several years of service, he decided it was time to start his own business. He moved to Jacksonville, FL to work with a friend of his from the police force who had purchased a Wilbert franchise in Jacksonville, FL. In 1947, Wilbert franchises became available in Asheville, NC and Greenville, SC. Roy purchased both franchises, although he later sold the Asheville franchise to Bill Sword who still owns and operates the Asheville plant today.  A small building on Poinsett Hwy was the original home to Wilbert Burial Vault of Greenville. The building housed one concrete mixer and two forms for manufacturing the vaults. The war had just ended and the age of the depression was still lingering. Since there was no telephone service, Roy drove to funeral homes every day seeking vault orders. After three months and no orders, he was ready to close the doors, when one more trip to Mackey Mortuary produced his very first order. The next day, he sold his second vault to Thomas McAfee Funeral Home.

The first vaults produced by Wilbert Burial Vault of Greenville were made of a mix of concrete and asphalt - primarily for protection against water. The production and the movement of the vaults required much physical labor. The vaults had to be moved using rollers and two heavy oak boards that were side-by-side. The vault would be moved from one board to the next, then an oak board would be moved forward, and the steps would be repeated over and over again until the vault was moved on or off the bed of the truck and to the gravesite. Digging graves and lowering the vaults were no small feat, either, and were extremely labor-intensive. The graves were dug by hand, 4-6 feet deep. And the vaults were manually lowered into the graves using a chain-fall. Roy's sons, Stephen, Lewis, and Cleve, began learning the business at a very young age. At an early age, Stephen began small tasks such as cutting wire. His responsibilities grew as he did, and by the age of 14, he was assisting with the manufacturing and the delivery of the vaults as a summer job. Younger brothers Lewis and Cleve both took on similar jobs, helping out in all facets of the business with increasing responsibilities and ownership as they grew older.

Wilbert Burial Vault of Greenville moved from Poinsett Hwy to Lowndes Hill Road in 1948 and then remained there until their relocation to Roper Mountain Road in 1967. In 1987, the Greenville franchise made one last move to its current home at Young Court. Today, Wilbert Burial Vault of Greenville is owned by Stephen Young and Boyd Anderson, with Boyd primarily managing the day-to-day operations. Boyd is the son-in-law of Stephen. He joined the company in 1996 and purchased Lewis’ ownership in March 2003. Boyd moved from Huntsville, AL where he was in another family business, Woody Anderson Ford. Wilbert Burial Vault of Greenville was named as an “Ultimate Service Provider” by Wilbert Funeral Services, corporate headquarters in Chicago, IL. This is the highest level of achievement awarded to a franchise. The Greenville franchise takes pride in this achievement as the local families are the recipients of this great service. In addition, Wilbert regularly offers continuing education classes to funeral home professionals.

Contact us to learn more about Wilbert funeral services or to request a schedule of the upcoming continuing education classes for funeral professionals.Ultimate Service Provider

Areas Served

Wilbert Burial Vault of Greenville offers burial vaults and creamation urn products to 10 counties in upstate South Carolina: Abbeville, Anderson, Cherokee, Greenville, Greenwood, Laurens, Oconee, Pickens, Spartanburg, and Union.

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Set Up

Wilbert offers two types of burial set ups, Wilbert Way (WW) and Above Ground with Lowering Device (AL). Both set ups consists of an above ground seal and a lowering device, also known as The Wilbert Way Lowering Device. The difference in the two set ups is in the placement of the vault and the vault cover during the funeral service.

Grass & Chairs

For those who are interested, grass and chairs are available as an additional service to families who would like a graveside service or an extra amenity at the burial site. Six pieces of grass and eighteen folding chairs will typically cover a gravesite area and will be neatly arranged under the tents. Wilbert Burial Vault manages the delivery, setup, and removal of the grass and chairs.


Two 16x14 tents are set by Wilbert Burial Vault at the gravesite for funeral services. The tents cover the burial area and provide a comfortable place for families to gather during the funeral. At the end of the funeral, the family tent is removed. The tent over the burial plot typically remains for 4 days.


Nameplates give burial vaults a personalized touch. They are a standard feature of Continental vaults and above. For an extra charge, nameplates can be added to the Salute and Monticello burial vaults. The nameplate includes the name of the deceased and the birth and death dates.

Grave Digging & Disinterment

Wilbert Burial Vault provides grave digging & disinterment services. Wilbert is fully equipped with "track hoe" tractors which significantly reduce the amount of time needed to prepare a grave. The grave digging service includes the opening and closing of the grave. Wilbert also provides a hand-dug grave service at a premium. If it becomes necessary to move a vault from one location to another, Wilbert can assist with these services. We handle everything from locating the vault to relocating the vault to a new location.

Vault Transfer

Vault Transfer is a service available between Wilbert licensees and dealers. Wilbert Burial Vault uses the vault transfer service when a burial request has been made outside of the licensee territory. The location of the cemetery is needed to determine the appropriate Wilbert licensee or dealer. Since the services offered by each Wilbert licensee vary, the licensees work together on a per burial basis to determine the services, such as tents, grass, chairs, and grave digging, that each licensee will provide for the burial.

First Responders

When a hero falls, Wilbert is there.

Our “Commemorating First Responders” program provides families of firefighters, law enforcement officers and emergency medical personnel who have died in the line of duty with a tribute worthy of their valor and sacrifice.

At no charge to the family, Wilbert and our licensees donate a customized Wilbert Stainless Steel Triune® burial vault. If the choice is cremation, we offer a selection of four urns, as well as a Stainless Steel Triune urn vault for memorial tribute. If permitted, a WilbertWay® graveside service may also be included.

Join us as we help families honor heroic lives, sacrificed in valiant service to neighbor and community.

Contact your local funeral professional for more information.

Ultimate Service Provider

Wilbert Funeral Service in Chicago (corporate HQ) has awarded Wilbert Burial Vault of Greenville with "Ultimate Service Provider" for the tenth year in a row.

There are four service levels: Minimum Service, Basic Service, Premium Service, and Ultimate Service Provider. To be classified as an Ultimate Service Provider, one must receive at least 75 points out of 88 points; a higher score is attainable when bonus points are earned for exceptional achievements. Points are collected by category, including tents, chairs, greens, Wilbert Way, lowering device, vaults, employees, and trucks and delivery. Wilbert of Greenville surpassed the 75 points needed to obtain Ultimate Service Provider. Although we are proud of this accomplishment internally, it pleases us most that local families are the recipients of this service.