The History of the Lewisburg-based funeral home is comparatively short, considering that it was established almost 70 years ago! The Grenoble family is only the third family to take ownership of the funeral home, preceded by just two previous owners.
The original owner (Glenn E. Dornsife) established and ran the funeral home for a total of 29 years, and the second owner (Gary H. Cronrath) operated it for nearly 40 years.
Mr. Dornsife, a graduate of Sunbury High School and the Renouard School of Mortuary Science in New York City, was engaged in the funeral profession in Sunbury for 14 years prior to establishing a funeral business in Lewisburg on October 1, 1938. On April 1, 1945, he purchased the former Matlack home (the current location of the funeral home) and began operating his funeral business from that site.
On October 14, 1967, he sold the business and real estate to Gary Cronrath. Mr. Cronrath was a graduate of Lebanon Valley College and the San Francisco College of Mortuary Science. He worked with his father, Paul E. Cronrath, at the elder Cronrath's funeral home in nearby Watsontown, and was associated with Knight Colonial Funeral Home in Williamsport. When word got out that Mr. Dornsife was looking for a buyer, Gary's father encouraged him to pursue the opportunity. Gary and his wife, Robina, successfully operated the funeral home while living and raising their family there. When it became evident that neither their son, Raleigh, nor their daughter, Louise, were interested in taking over, Gary began looking for other buyers.
In the fall of 2006, Nathan E. Grenoble, who also owned the Grenoble Funeral Home in Muncy, expressed interest in acquiring the funeral home (as well as the Watsontown location). On March 30, 2007, the deal was closed and the new name, Cronrath-Grenoble Funeral Home, went into effect. Ironically, a related line of the Grenoble family had already lived in the Lewisburg area for many years. Those Grenoble's operated some of Lewisburg's previous businesses, including a jewelry store and a butcher shop.
In 1937 on one side of his parent's double home on Brimmer Avenue, Paul Cronrath opened his funeral business. The following year he moved his business to its current location, 308 Main Street.
In 1983 he sold the business to his son, Gary. Although Paul retired at age 70, he assisted Gary in the business until just prior to his death in 1998. His dedication and involvement in the funeral industry spanned a period of over 60 years.
In the fall of 2006, Nathan E. Grenoble, who also owned Grenoble Funeral Home in Muncy, expressed interest in acquiring the funeral home (as well as the Lewisburg location). On March 30, 2007 the deal was closed and the new name, Cronrath-Grenoble Funeral Home, went into effect.