Todd Winkel | Funeral Director
Our owner and Lead Funeral Director, Todd Winkel, was born and raised in Sioux Falls, SD. Wanting to stay close to home, he earned degrees in journalism, business administration and public relations at Sioux Falls College. Todd found careers in tv and radio, where he could use his engaging personality to entertain and inform others. Wanting to fulfill his desire to serve, he left the media industry to work as a Correctional Officer at the SD State Penitentiary and as a SD law enforcement officer. On the side, he also owned and operated a lawn care service, Bladerunners, Inc., and continues today. In 2003, an opportunity to study funeral directing presented itself. After years of learning the industry inside and out, Todd knew he had found his calling. Heartland Funeral Home was born in 2009, planted in the community of Brandon, SD. Along with his wife and partner, Sue, Todd has been able to use his compassion and philanthropic desires to give back to the communities he loves and serve others in an impactful way.
Sue Winkel | Director of Operations and Continuity
A native of Brandon since she was a little girl, Sue Winkel treasures her community and its people. She attended kindergarten through 12th grade in the Brandon Valley School District, graduating in 1990. Sue’s entire adult career has revolved around real estate and title insurance. In 2017, Sue met Todd Winkel and was introduced to the funeral industry. Her years of experience in managing people and large-scale operations made her the perfect fit to fill the role as Director of Operations and Continuity. In addition to assisting the Funeral Director with day to day operations, she makes sure that everything runs smoothly behind the scenes to give clients a peaceful experience.
Grace Goeden | Funeral Intern
The newest member of our team, Grace Goeden, was raised in Yankton, SD for 11 years. She then moved to Brandon, SD where she found a community of kind people to support her as she grew up. Shortly after moving to Brandon, Grace found her passion- funeral service. Simple volunteering did not fulfill Grace’s need to serve her community. After graduating high school with high honors and 23 college credits, Grace started at our funeral home as an intern. Grace is attending Wayne State University online to continue to serve our community while she earns her degree. Grace is also proficient in American Sign Language, as her passion also includes serving the Deaf community.
Charlie Childerston | Funeral Assistant
Charlie Childerston was born and raised in Chadron, NE. After graduating high school, he attended Grace College of the Bible in Omaha for 2 years but decided to complete his teaching degree at Chadron State College. While in college, Charlie met and married his wife, Carol, in 1962. Soon after graduation, they moved to Sioux Falls where they both became teachers in the Sioux Falls School District. When Charlie is not at Heartland, he can be found spending time with family, 3 children, 9 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild, and friends or giving back to his community. Though Charlie retired after 36 years of teaching, you can still hear him announcing football and basketball games at Lincoln High School. He has also dedicated over 15 years to volunteering for the Furniture Mission.
Brent Anderson | Funeral Assistant
Brent Anderson, recently retired from Hy-Vee after 48 years of employment, joins Heartland Funeral Home to assist with funeral services and help care for the families of the departed. A true public servant, he also worked as a reserve police officer in Minnesota and South Dakota beginning in 1982. Since his retirement, you can often find Brent spending time with his wife of 35 years, Gwynne, at their Brandon home, with daughters, Kelcey (son-in-law, Brent Smith) and Kaylee, and three grandchildren. They love the life they’ve built in Brandon since 1992 and enjoy traveling and heading out on the family boat.
Sharon Budd | Funeral Assistant
Having resided in Brandon since the mid-1970s, Sharon Budd was proud to raise her three daughters in a safe and growing community. She was a hard worker her entire adult life, trimming pork at John Morrell to driving truck and waitressing. After many years, she finally gets to enjoy retirement. Loving to socialize and spend time with her daughter, Sue Winkel, you may find Sharon helping out at the funeral home part-time. Look for her by the guestbook and beverage station!
Denny Tunell | Funeral Assistant
Denny Tunell has been part of our community for many years, calling Sioux Falls home since 1961. He raised his family here with his first wife, Marianne, for 27 years. After her passing, he married again to his wife, Maxine, in 1994. Denny’s pride and joy lies with his four children, Jason Tunell, Stacia Tarr, Jason (Shelly) Roberts and the late Dori Tulio Rote. His children have blessed him with 10 wonderful grandchildren. For 24 years, Denny worked for Midwest Railcar and then Hy-Vee for several years after that. Now, when he’s not assisting funerals, you can find him spending time with family and friends and traveling the country with Maxine.