Our People

Simon Manning



Simon spent his early years in Belmont, Petone and Lower Hutt, being educated at Belmont Primary, Wilford and Waterloo Schools prior to Hutt Intermediate and then Hutt Valley Memorial Technical College.

Simon's grandparents died when he was at College and from that point, he knew that the funeral profession was where he wanted to be. Simon managed to obtain a part-time position with a company in Wellington and upon leaving school started permanently with that company.

After 9 years with that company, in 1989, he decided to open Harbour City Funeral Home. Simon is a qualified embalmer and funeral director and has taken on roles to encourage and train people who like himself choose the funeral directing role to serve others.

Within the funeral world, Simon leads the New Zealand Funeral Directors response in disaster situations. This specialist work has seen Simon deployed in Nauru, Africa, Indonesia, Malaysia, and The Netherlands.

Simon is a keen Rotarian and has taken on various roles within Rotary including the role of District Governor for the Lower North Island. Rotary’s motto of Service Above Self, fits well with who Simon is.

Simon mixes his time between Wellington and the Kāpiti Coast, anyone who knows Simon, knows he loves his role as a funeral director. Making a difference and helping others is what it is all about for Simon.

Brad McAneney

Funeral Director


Brad attended Campion College, a Catholic Coeducational College before moving to Auckland to study Social Work. He graduated in 1999 with a bachelor of Social Work from Massey University. He joined the funeral industry in 2001 as a trainee embalmer and now holds both the National Certificate in Embalming and the National Certificate in Funeral Directing.

Brad enjoys both the embalming and funeral directing roles and holds customer service as a high ideal. "Our role is very flexible, some families want us to take care of all the finer details, while others are very hands-on. I enjoy the diverse types of people that I meet and being of assistance at a time that can be very stressful for families."

Ruth Lacombe-Post

Funeral Director

Ruth Website

After a personal experience in her late teens, Ruth aspired to help others in the same way a funeral director supported her. Knowing she needed to gain life experience first, the following years proved invaluable through having to run a home from a young age, a 2 ½ year move to the Himalayan Mountains in India and loads of travel to foreign places in between.

Ruth returned from overseas to care for a family member. She later joined Harbour City as a Funeral Director in early 2014 equipped with a cultured balance of life skills, compassion, a zest to learn and the want to serve her community. She enjoys a good laugh, values people from every walk of life and has a humanistic approach as problems are opportunities to learn.

Ruth is happily married and outside of work loves tending to her ‘as close to India’ slice of life in Ōhau. 

Lisa Mansfield 

Funeral Director

lisa website

Lisa Mansfield was born in Lower Hutt. She attended Puketiro primary school in Maungaraki, went to St Oran’s College in Lower Hutt and then studied at Victoria University in Wellington. Apart from four years spent living in Melbourne, Lisa has always resided and worked in the Hutt Valley.

Lisa has had a variety of service-based employment, but after some pivotal life experiences, she found her vocation as a Funeral Director and started work with Harbour City Funeral Home in 2011.

In February 2016 Lisa graduated from Weltec attaining the New Zealand Diploma in Funeral Directing.

Eva Rippon

Funeral Director

Eva web

Eva was born and raised in Auckland where she completed a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Psychology and English.

Eva comes from a long line of nurses, so from a young age she knew she wanted to work in role which saw her caring for people. It was Eva’s desire to help others that got her into the funeral industry in 2014.

In 2017 Eva spent two and a half months walking the length of the South Island (roughly 1,400 kilometres) along the Te Araroa trail.

Eva’s spare time is spent walking the beautiful trails Wellington has to offer, visiting her friends, family and Scottish Terrier puppy in Auckland as well as baking, reading and learning to long-board.

Katie Sampson


Katie web

Katie was born in Phoenix, Arizona, and moved to New Zealand with her parents and younger brother in 2008. She grew up in Paraparaumu, graduating from Paraparaumu College. She moved to Wellington after being given the opportunity to become a trainee embalmer for Harbour City.

Katie has always had an interest in the funeral industry, but gained most of her motivation and interest after the difficult loss of her grandfather in America in 2011. She has always held deep sympathy for families who lose loved ones, and is passionate about helping others.

In 2019 Katie obtained a qualification in Level 4 Study and Career Prep for Funeral/Social services from Weltec, giving her knowledge and understanding of the funeral industry, different cultures/beliefs, along with human development and grief theories.

Before entering the funeral industry, Katie had worked in hospitality for 3 and a half years as front of house. She has worked as a waitress, barista and bartender in Wellington and Waikanae.

In her free time, Katie enjoys doing art, including but not limited to: oil painting, sculpture, drawing, photography and digital art. She also enjoys nature walks, spending time with animals, and her friends. Even though she is not a bartender anymore, she still enjoys making cocktails in her home bar, and cooking/baking.




Danny Langstraat


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Born in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Danny arrived in the Hutt Valley in 1983. He attended Hutt Intermediate and finished his schooling at Hutt Valley High School in 1992.

In February 1993 Danny started with Harbour City Funeral Home, Kilbirnie on a three month trial period and decided to stay on. Danny completed the Embalming course in 1995, achieving the top theory and top overall student for that year. In 1997, he became fully qualified by completing the Funeral Directors Course and attaining the Diploma in Funeral Services.

Since starting in 1993, Danny has had numerous roles within the company, periodically moving to and from other branches to fulfil those roles. In 2004 Danny became a Company Director and Shareholder.

Danny currently resides in Lower Hutt with his wife (Janelle) and their young daughters Petra, Skylah, April and Melody.

Jordan Goss

Funeral Director 

Jordan Website2

Jordan was born and raised in the Hutt Valley, where he attended St Matthew’s Primary School and Parkway College, completing his secondary schooling in 1999.

From an early age Jordan had an interest in the funeral industry.  While at college he was given the opportunity to spend time doing work experience in a local funeral home, from this experience he knew the industry was for him.  In 2009 Jordan took up a part time role with Harbour City Funeral Home, which very quickly became a full time position. 

Jordan graduated from Weltec in 2013 with a National Diploma in Embalming, and then in February 2016 with a National Diploma in Funeral Directing.  Jordan holds the highest qualifications currently available in the funeral industry.

Having spent time living in the Hawkes Bay working as a Funeral Director and Embalmer, Jordan has recently returned home to Wellington and Harbour City Funeral Home.  

Christine Batey

Funeral Director

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Christine was born and raised in Rotorua where she attended St Michael’s Primary and John Paul College. After spending a year working as a Trainee Funeral Director she then made the big move to Sydney, Australia where she spent the last 6 years as a Funeral Director, working in Sydney has allowed Christine to take care and assist many different cultures and religions. 

After spending a few months in the UK, Christine and her Husband Liam along with their two boys Troy and William made the move to Wellington to be closer to family and give their boys a good old Kiwi upbringing. 

Christine joined Harbour City Funeral Home as a Funeral Director, Christine’s caring and genuine nature allows her to connect with bereaved families when they need it most. Having experienced personal loss allows her to empathise with those who she meets.  

Ettiene du Plessis

Funeral Director

Ettiene Web

Ettiene was born and raised in South Africa and has been actively involved in the funeral industry for about 10 years permanently and 4 years freelance prior to that.  His decision to become involved in the industry was determined by a very sad event in his personal life and he decided that being part of this very undermined and misunderstood profession in South Africa was one of the ways he could make a difference for people going through similar situations.  Ettiene sees this as his passion and not just another job or career.  

In his career as a Funeral Director he has been part of some high-profile arrangements in South Africa which included the legendary rugby player Joost van der Westhuizen who is an iconic name, even within New Zealand, going back to the 1995 Rugby World Cup and local icon ‘Jona Lomu’.

Ettiene, his wife and 3 children have decided that New Zealand is the way forward, not just personally, but to further his career as a funeral director and get more international exposure and experience.  His goal is to become a citizen of New Zealand and make this his home at Harbour City Funeral Home. 

Ettiene enjoys Motorsport, Golf and watching Rugby. Family time is very important to him.  He loves people and loves life.  He says; “we only have one life - and we must live it”.  “Where passion meets excellence”.

Sheryl Rodda

Account Manager


Sheryl has held an Accounts and Administration role with the company since October 2004.

She really cares about being able to help families wherever she can as they prepare for a funeral.  After the funeral, Sheryl is always happy to help our client family’s deal with banks, lawyers and agencies like WINZ and ACC for funeral grants when families are not able to, or the process just seems too difficult.

Shelley Knapp


Shelley web

Shelley was born in Nelson, raised in Upper Hutt and obtaining her diploma in embalming in 2013.

 Shelley has worked in the funeral industry for 12 years and proudly joined Harbour City Funeral Home in 2019. She is a member of the Blake International Disaster response team.

 Shelley was drawn into the funeral industry after a close friend passed away. She saw what a huge impact that had left on the family and with her caring and loving nature, Shelley believed she could make a difference at such a sad and precious time.

 Outside of work Shelley enjoys spending time with her family and friends.  Shelley has developed the bug for travelling and is working her way around the world visiting a new country every year.


Geoff Botherway

Funeral Director 


Geoff joined the funeral industry in Hamilton at the completion of high school as a trainee embalmer and completed his qualification in embalming in Wellington in 2002. 

Geoff loved his time in Wellington so much he made the move and joined our company in 2003. He completed his funeral directing qualification in 2004 and now holds the National Diploma in Funeral Services.

Geoff served on the Executive Committee of the New Zealand Embalmers Association for 8 years as the Secretary and President and has a strong passion for the art of embalming.

Geoff loves the variety the funeral industry provides and has a passion for helping the local community through education.

Geoff’s interests include all sports, exercise, travel, music & podcasts, and ironing but most of his spare time is spent outdoors with his partner and three daughters. On a Saturday you will find him at his beloved Poneke Rugby Club.

Stu Print

Funeral Director

Stu Web

Stu was born and raised in the Manawatu where he attended Hiwinui Primary and Palmerston North Boys High School. After two years with Westpac Bank, Stu had a successful career as a Sharemilker for 16 years. He then studied theology, before becoming the Minister of a suburban Wellington church for ten years. 

While taking a year off to do further study, Stu began working as a part-time Funeral Director’s Assistant. He enjoyed the role so much that he decided being a Funeral Director was a career that he wanted to pursue. Stu was employed full time by Harbour City Funeral Home at the beginning of 2020.  He brings a gentle, calm manner and experience being alongside people experiencing loss and grief.

Stu loves to watch and play rugby. At 50, he still plays the odd game for the Ories Pressies and is surprisingly nimble at finding the tryline. He also loves the NFL and in 2017, travelled to Philadelphia to watch his beloved Eagles. He loves music and exploring the different tastes of Wellington’s Craft Beers with his wife Michelle. 

Sarah-Jane Clark


Sarah web

I am from the UK and have been employed in the funeral profession since 2001. I always knew I wanted to work in funeral service from an early age.

I started my career as an arranger. I gained a huge amount of knowledge from dealing with bereaved families and achieved a lot of satisfaction helping people at such an important time.

I enrolled on the British Institute of Embalmers course in December 2012 and obtained my Diploma in Embalming in June 2015.

I relocated to Wellington with my Partner Matt and dog Gabby in April 2016.

I look forward to my new life and career with Harbour City Funeral Home.

Emma Quayle



Emma graduated from Massey University in 2010 with an Honours degree in Visual Communication Design, and also gained membership into the International Society of Typographic Designers. Membership is awarded to practicing designers who demonstrate, through the quality of their work, their commitment to achieving the highest possible standard of visual communication.

Emma is very passionate about her design work, with technical strengths in typography and graphic design. “I strive to achieve consistently high level results that meet requirements to the best of my ability”.

Frank Milne

Crematorium Operator and Funeral Home Assistant

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Frank came to the funeral industry in Wellington for the first time in 2007 from having worked in pastoral work for 15 years and supporting people in the community.

He moved to Wellington after having spent time in these roles in various locations around the country including Northland, Otago, Wellington, Gisborne, and Rotorua.

Since then Frank has had a couple of different roles within the industry, being a funeral director from 2007 - 2010. He then took on the role of casket trimmer and car valet part time while working in a mental health support worker role for a private NGO. He now is working with the funeral home as the Crematorium Operator and funeral home assistant.

Frank has been married to his best friend, Sandra, for 30+ years. They have two sons and a grandson. He enjoys time with his wife, sons and grandson; watching movies, going fishing, doing a cross-fit class 3 times per week and biking (mainly to work at this stage).

Frank and Sandra also have a couple of Bichon Frieze dogs whom they love and spend time grooming these and a few friends’ dogs as well.

Sheryl Wright

Funeral Director


Sheryl Wright (nee Wooller)

Was born in Wellington and educated at Kilbirnie School and Wellington East Girl’s College.

Sheryl has been on the fringe of the funeral industry for 44 years as her husband was previously a funeral director, they have two adult children and seven grand-children.

In August of 1994 she joined Harbour City Funeral Home to assist in the administration side of the company, after several months she was invited to add to her role the challenge of becoming a funeral director.

Over the past 20 years, Sheryl has seen the company grow, not only in professionally trained staff but also in the changes in facilities, client choices, and the bereavement support we offer to our clients.

Working throughout the different branches enables Sheryl to assist clients with on going support and assistance, which she enjoys.

Having the life experiences first hand of being a friend, wife, mother, nana, and also having experienced first hand the loss of those closest to us, she has a real empathy to those who she comes into contact with.

Sheryl’s personal time is spent with her family, as they conveniently live in the Wellington region. 

Ross Coubrough


Ross website

Born and raised in Alexandra, Otago, attending Dunstan High School, Ross moved to Wellington in 2016 to study and pursue a career in graphic design, where his passion lies.

He has spent the last 3 years bartending for a number of different bars in Wellington, from duty manager to cocktail mixologist.

Previously freelancing, Ross has completed design work for sports teams, real estate companies, DJ’s, cafes, bars and more.

Outside of work, Ross enjoys spending time with friends, movies, cooking and looking after his cat, Eco.



Harbour City Funeral Homes