Our Staff

Our dedicated and supportive staff are here to guide you through this difficult journey. We take pride in doing our absolute best to ensure your needs are met.

We understand how difficult it is to lose a loved one. Our compassionate and caring team work hard each and every day to make sure that the members of our community and beyond are taken care of during such a difficult time. For advice on what to do when a loved one is dying, making funeral arrangements, pre-arranging your own funeral, or anything else, please feel free to contact us, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

We promise to work with you and your family in your time of need to create the perfect memorial service for your loved one. We will be here for you today, as well as tomorrow.

Gary Sywak, Owner and Managing Funeral Director

Gary has lived in the Port Dover area all his life, graduating from Port Dover Composite School in 1973. He is married to Carla and they have 3 children and 2 grandchildren. His hobbies include farming, reading and when time permits a little golf. Gary has been working at Thompson Waters for the last 5 years on a part time basis. After retiring from Stelco with 31 years’ service he decided to go back to school. He attended Humber College Funeral Service Education and served his internship  at Thompson Waters Funeral Home. In June 2013 he graduated with honours from Funeral Service Education, he also successfully completed his Board of Funeral Service exams. He is now the Managing Funeral Director at Thompson Waters. Gary looks forward to working closely with his wife Carla to continue serving the families of Port Dover and area with care and dignity.

Carla Sywak (Waters), Owner and Business Manager

Carla is eldest daughter of the late Jack and Evelyne Waters.  She spent many years working in health care, hospitality, government, and retail sectors, mainly in administrative positions.  Carla worked part-time as bookkeeper for her father at the funeral home when her parents purchased it in 1978.  When her dad passed away in 1997 she joined the funeral home on a full-time basis as the Business Manager/Funeral Assistant.  She has always enjoyed working and serving the public, she feels extremely fortunate to be able to help families at a difficult and confusing time in their lives.

Carla is married to Gary and they have three children all in their twenties.  Over the years Carla has been involved in several community organizations.  Recently much of her time is split between her work at the funeral home, family, her beautiful grandchildren, and her grand-dogs.  She enjoys travelling and curling up with a good book.  She also takes great enjoyment in enhancing and further exploring her spiritual growth by attending self-development seminars, retreats, and workshops.

Crystal Nora Lightfoot, Funeral Director

Crystal was born and raised in Hamilton but has strong family ties to Haldimand/ Norfolk and Elgin counties. Her background includes over three years of  volunteer service with the Mennonite Central Committee in a residential care centre for children, certification with Flowers Canada as a Floral Designer and a bachelors degree in Christian Education from Tyndale University.  Though her background is in the Baptist faith, she is experienced in serving families of all faiths.  Personal interests include family tree research, painting, and best buddy "Jingles", her five year old Briard sheepdog.  Her career in funeral service began as a receptionist for a Hamilton funeral home, followed by training at Humber College and licensing by the Board of Funeral Service.  Crystal spent seventeen years working as a Director in Thunder Bay, Ontario, returning a few years ago, to be close to family.  In her own words, "though I am not a true Doverite (yet), I am extremely grateful for the opportunity and the privilege of working along with the Waters family at the Thompson Waters Funeral Home, serving the community of Port Dover."