J. Larry Carter was born and raised in Salisbury, in North Central Missouri, graduating from Salisbury High School in 1970. He initially attended Texas Christian University and completed his degree at the University of Missouri in Columbia, MO. He graduated in 1974 with a Bachelor of Science in Public Administration. He attended Dallas Institute of Mortuary Science graduating in 1977 and returned to Salisbury to work for Berry Funeral Home. In 1979, Larry married Kayla Davis, another Salisbury resident.
Kayla Davis Carter was born in Seattle, Washington and raised in Salisbury, MO. She graduated in 1972 from Salisbury High School and attended the University of Missouri, obtaining a Bachelor of Science in Business Education in 1976. She was a department accountant at the University of Missouri School of Medicine until 1979 when she married Larry and returned to Salisbury.
In 1980 Larry & Kayla moved to Elsberry, Missouri to work for Ricks Funeral Homes. They purchased the business with locations in Elsberry and Winfield in March 1981 and changed the name to Carter-Ricks Funeral Homes.
Larry is a member and past Master of the New Hope Lodge #199, A.F.&A.M. in Elsberry; a member of the Scottish Rite, Valley of St. Louis, the Northeast Area Scottish Rite Club and the Moolah Shrine in St. Louis. After 35 years as a volunteer and Captain with the Elsberry Fire Protection District, he retired from the Department in February 2022. Larry continues to serve on the Fire District's board of directors. He is also a member of various civic organizations. Kayla is a member and past president of the P.E.O. Sisterhood, Chapter AI; the DNC Club; is a board member and long-time Treasurer for the Palmer Family Memorial Library; and is a member of other civic organizations. Larry and Kayla are active members of the Elsberry First Christian Church, and both serve as Elders.
Larry and Kayla are also active in the Missouri Funeral Directors and Embalmers Association, the National Funeral Directors Association and former members of the International Order of the Golden Rule. Kayla has been a board member for the Missouri Funeral Trust for over 30 years and is currently serving as immediate past President.
Our son, Jonathan Carter graduated from Elsberry High School in 2000 and Southeast Missouri State University, Cape Girardeau, MO in 2005, with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. He is currently employed as a Charge Nurse in the ICU at the John Cochron VA Hospital in St. Louis. His wife, Colleen, is a graduate of the University of Missouri at Columbia, MO with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, and is a PAC Unit Nurse with Mercy Hospital in St Louis. Jon and Colleen live in St. Charles, MO and have three children.
Our son, Michael Carter graduated from Elsberry High School in 2004 and the University of Missouri at Rolla (now Missouri S&T) in 2008 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Information Science and Technology. He is currently employed as a Systems Analyst with St. Louis City Soccer Club in St Louis. His wife, Kelly is also a graduate from University of Missouri at Rolla with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering and is an electrical engineer with Burns and McDonnell in St. Louis. Michael and Kelly live in St. Charles, MO and have three children.
Both of our sons still assist periodically at the funeral home when their schedules allow.