site image

Our Team


The Brenny Funeral Chapel staff is a group of people committed to helping the members of the Brainerd Lakes Area community celebrate and pay tribute to their loved ones. Our diverse interests, experiences and backgrounds provide the families we serve many resources to help create fitting tributes, a comforting ear, or helpful hints as they navigate the many choices and decisions that apprise themselves following a death. Each member of the staff is dedicated to making the journey of the families we serve as peaceful as we can.

Our Brenny Family serves YOUR family as our own.

Our staff is comprised of dedicated and licensed professionals with the experience to answer all your questions regarding our services. Please feel free to contact any of our staff members at any time.

John Brenny

John Brenny

Owner/Funeral Director

Growing up on a farm, John learned the value of hard work and integrity.  After many years of supporting his family through a construction business and chicken farming, John knew he needed to make a change in his life and a difference in the lives of those around him.  He decided to go back to school to become a funeral director and graduated from the University of Minnesota. Since 2012, he has been working for Brenny Family Funeral Chapel.  He achieved another goal in February of 2019 when he and his wife, Karolyn purchased the funeral chapels.  He is excited to usher in a new era of compassionate care and excellent service.

John's family is most important to him and he enjoys the time he is able to spend with them - whether attending a Vikings game, boating on Perch Lake, or sitting around the bonfire. In the winter you can catch him relaxing while watching his favorite tv shows Judge Judy and Impractical Jokers. John is always willing to lend a hand and help out in any way that he can.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


Karolyn Brenny

Karolyn Brenny

Owner/After Care

Growing up in a family of eleven in St. Augusta, MN, Karolyn learned at a young age the values of hard work and family. 

Karolyn married John Brenny in 1990 and together had their four children: Kortney, Wayde, Alexander, and Vanessa. For many years, they lived on the century family farm John grew up on in Gilman, MN. Karolyn and John have always worked together on various adventures in life, and in February of 2019, they purchased the Brenny Family Funeral Chapels along with their son, Alexander. 

Karolyn has her own business – Karolyn’s Integrated Healing Hands, where she does various types of alternative healing and makes her own products. Her passion to help people heal emotionally and mentally is a great asset that she brings to the Brenny Family Funeral Chapel team. With her gifts and love for people, she helps families through the grieving process with our After-Care Services. 

In Karolyn’s free time, she loves being with her family, as family is such an important part of her life. She enjoys spending time with John, their children, and their granddaughters, Dalia and Jayde. She loves to cook and entertain for her family and friends, going on pontoon rides and fishing on the lake, and being in the sunshine. During the summer months, you can find Karolyn and John out for walks or on bike rides. Karolyn is very interested in health and is always learning what else she could teach or provide to her family, friends, and clients. 

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


Alexander Brenny

Alexander Brenny

Funeral Director Intern/PreNeed Counselor

Alex's interest in funeral service started after his dad began working for the Brenny Family Funeral Chapel in 2012. Alex was eager to follow in the path of providing excellent service and care to the families in the Brainerd Lakes Area.  He started by obtaining his insurance license and working with families preplanning and prefunding their funeral services.  In 2017, he began attending Des Moines Area Community College for Mortuary Science.  He will be a licensed Funeral Director as soon as his internship hours are complete.

Eager to make Brenny Family Funeral Chapel the leader in funeral care, he enjoys learning about the new products, services, and trends that provide families with the most options while keeping costs economical. 

Alex enjoys researching current events and staying in shape by working out at CrossFit Grow.  A member of BNI, he likes meeting new people in the area.  He and his fiancée, Rachel are looking forward to making the Brainerd Lakes Area their home.


Telephone: 1-218-828-5051

Email: alex@brenny.com


Joseph Brenny

Joseph Brenny

Retired

Joe owned and operated the Brenny Funeral Chapels for more than 46 years before selling to John and Karolyn Brenny in 2019.  He is now looking forward to retirement - spending time on the lake, on the deer stand and spoiling his two little grandsons in Florida.

Joe began his career in funeral service as a young boy watching his dad serve families in the Little Falls Area.  After completing high school and obtaining is Mortuary Science Degree, Joe bought the Belling and Huff Funeral Homes in Staples and expanded over his 46 years in funeral care to have chapels in Baxter/Brainerd, Crosslake, Pequot Lakes, and Randall.  During his career, he estimates he has served more than 12,500 families.  And the best part for him has always been when a family comes to him a year, ten years or even 25 years later and remembers the kindness and professionalism his showed their family.


Ashley Prentice

Ashley Prentice

Funeral Director

Ashley joined the Brenny team in May of 2019. She attended St. Cloud State University, where she obtained her degree in Psychology and continued her education at the University of Minnesota where she earned her Mortuary Science degree in 2010. Ashley enjoys helping families share their loved ones life story in a meaningful personalized way.

At home, Ashley is busy with a young family. Ashley is married to Ryan Prentice and together the couple has two young children; Paisley and Finley. In her spare time she enjoys camping up at Breezy Point, fishing on local lakes with her family, bow hunting as the leaves start to fall, and delving into a great book.

Ashley is on the board for the Crisis Line and a member of BNI. She loves to meet new people and stay involved in the community.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051

Email: ashley@brenny.com


Mike Condon

Mike Condon

Funeral Director

Mike joined our staff on September 1, 2014. He brings with him over 39 years of experience and knowledge. Mike is married to Pauline and they have two sons and three grandchildren. Mike is very happy to be living in the Brainerd Lakes Area, so he can enjoy one of his favorite pastimes, golf, on the award winning courses we have in our area. He also enjoys working with computers and skiing.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051

Email: mike@brenny.com


Kathee Stanwood

Kathee Stanwood

Funeral Director

Kathee graduated in 2005 from the University of Minnesota. She has worked full-time and part-time for the funeral home since then.  In 2017, she decided to go part-time to spend more time helping her husband's real estate business and free up her time to care of her grandchildren.

Prior to being in funeral service, Kathee and her family owned and operated The Cheese House in Brainerd...a gourmet deli and bakery. Kathee and her husband, Mike have three children, one granddaughter, and one grandson. Their family enjoys spending time together. Kathee is a great baker, excellent quilter, and a very compassionate person.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051

Email: kathee@brenny.com


Stephanie Jensen

Stephanie Jensen

Office Administrator

Stephanie joined the Brenny team in May of 2019. She takes great pride in assisting families prepare for their loved ones final farewell. Stephanie is the calming voice when families call the funeral home. She enjoys writing beautiful tribute notices, creating personalized memorials, and making sure details are carried out.


At home, Stephanie is busy with her son, Sky. In her spare time she enjoys running with her dogs, skateboarding with her son, powerlifting, traveling/adventuring, and cooking and baking recipes she's never tried before.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051

Email: stephanie@brenny.com


Steve Suer

Steve Suer

Celebrant

Steve Suer joined the Brenny team in 2010. Officiating at services, he is one of the kindest individuals you will ever meet. Steve served his country during Vietnam and truly understands the value of our veterans and their families. He and his wife Mary have four kids and grandchildren, along with their sweet little fur baby, Dolly.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


Wanda Biemert

Wanda Biemert

Funeral Assistant

Wanda has been a member of the community since birth and an excellent addition to our staff. Wanda is retired but enjoys coming in to help with visitations and luncheons. We also thank her for always decorating for the holidays. Wanda and her husband Gary live in Pillager where they enjoy spending time on the river with family and friends. Wanda is always ready for a good time and can find the best hats.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


Charley Andres

Charley Andres

Funeral Assistant

Charley has been on board since 2004. He is an excellent community member and funeral assistance for us in the Randall area where he has lived most of his life. Charley retired from Camp Ripley as Camp Commander and is always willing to lend a hand.

Charley and Mary live in Randall. They enjoy socializing with their friends and family. Charley also likes to hit the golf course whenever he is able.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


Gary Petersen

Gary Petersen

Funeral Assistant

Gary does whatever everybody else can't or won't do. He is a true jack of all trades and just a joy to have on staff. He is our handyman, transportation expert and funeral assistant. After retiring from Potlatch, this native Brainerdite wanted to keep busy and we are glad to have him around. Gary and his wife, Helen, live in Brainerd. They are members of St. Francis Catholic Church and enjoy spending time with their eight children, 14 grandchildren and their friends. We appreciate all the goodies he shares and his love of peanut butter and chocolate.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


Pat Huhta

Pat Huhta

Funeral Assistant

Pat Huhta has been a member of the Brenny Funeral Chapel team since 2011. Her experience in nursing and counseling makes her an excellent addition. She enjoys chatting with family members and funeral attendees while she ensures the cookies are soft and the coffee is hot.

Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


Ron Ommen

Ron Ommen

Funeral Assistant


Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


Kim Adams

Funeral Assistant


Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


Rachel Czaplewski

Funeral Assistant


Telephone: 1-218-828-5051


© 2019 Brenny Family Funeral Chapel and Cremation Services. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS