Date of Death, April 3, 2020. Born March 19, 1940, to Ila Bernece (Owen) Wright and Sharp Silvis Wright on a farm near Union Star, MO. He is survived by his wife, Jo Ann (nee Sears), sons, Gregory Allen (Dawn), Williamsport, PA, Christopher Allen (Shannon), Webster Groves, MO, Grandchildren: Amanda Kay (Wright) Braun (William), Paige Lee (Josh Simon, fiancee), Christina Marie, Rebekah Nicole, Nicholas Allen, Benjamin Allen, William Christopher, Samuel Sharp and Great-grandsons, Carter Michael and Mason Jeffrey Braun, Aunt Bee Ann Rozell, Uncle Bill and Aunt Hilde Wright, special sister-in-law Loretta Jones, Nephew Jack Wright (Lana), cousin Joe Boatwright, nieces, nephews and friends. Allen was predeceased by his parents, his oldest son Jeffrey Allen of Columbia, IL, his brother Larry and sister-in- law, Faye, of Holden, MO.
Allen graduated in 1957 from Southeast High School, Kansas City, MO, received a Bachelor’s degree in Business Communication from Columbia College, Columbia, MO, and a Master’s Degree in Management and Leadership from Webster University, St. Louis, MO. He retired in 1996 with over 40 years of military service in the U.S. Army Reserve, Regular Army and the Army National Guard. He enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserve on June 6, 1956 and transferred into the regular Army in 1957 with duty in anti-aircraft missiles (Nike Ajax) in Los Angeles, CA, and in Field Artillery in Germany with the 3rd Infantry Division. He was a Howitzer Section Chief for the Btry B, 2d Battalion 41st Field Artillery in Bamberg and Kitzingen, Germany. His high school sweetheart, Jo Ann (Sears), joined him in Bamberg, Germany, where they married November 3, 1960. Allen was discharged from the active Army and served with the USAR’s 584 QM Company (Air Delivery) as the acting First Sergeant. While he was in the USAR he was a patrolman with the Kansas City, MO, Police Department, graduating in Police Academy Class #88 and assigned to the Country Club Police District. In 1964 he joined the Missouri Army National Guard’s 3d Missile Battalion (Air Defense) as a full- time technician Missile Launcher Section Chief in Lone Jack, MO. He graduated as honor candidate from Officer Candidate School in 1966 and assigned Fire Control Platoon Leader, Btry B in Lone Jack, MO. He continued to serve as a full-time technician (Civil Service) (training officer and staff assistant) with the Missouri Army National Guard until his retirement in 1994, retiring as Colonel, the Deputy Commander of the 35th Engr Brigade, Ft. Leonard Wood, MO, in 1996.
Allen’s awards and achievements include Cadet Colonel of Army Junior ROTC his senior year at Southeast High School in Kansas City, Basic NCO Leadership Honor Graduate, Fort Leonard Wood, 7th US Army NCO Academy Honor Graduate in Germany, Erickson Trophy for Distinguished Graduate Missouri Army National Guard OCS School for 1966 – Class 4, US Army Command and General Staff College Honor Graduate and a graduate of the US Army War College in Class 88 at Carlisle Barracks, PA. His awards also include the Legion of Merit, four awards of Meritorious Service Medal, five Army Commendation Medals, two Army Achievement Medals and the De Fleury Bronze and Silver Medals by the U.S. Army Engineer Association.
Allen was an Eagle Scout in Troop 117, Kansas City, MO. He and Jo Ann are proud their sons, Jeff, Greg and Christopher, are also Eagle Scouts. Allen volunteered as a Boy Scout leader and was wood badge trained and led several expeditions with his sons to Philmont High Adventure Ranch in New Mexico. He has been a Scout Master in Kansas City, Jefferson City and an Assistant Scout Master and on District Training Staff in St. Louis. He is a Hard Way Warrior of Mic-0-Say and served on staff at H. Roe Bartle Scout Reservation. He is also a Brotherhood member of the Order of The Arrow. He served the Missouri High School Athletic Association as a high school football and baseball official for over 25 years working in Southern Illinois, the St. Louis and Kansas City, MO areas. He coached his sons in little league football and baseball in Pleasant Hill and St. Louis, MO.
After retirement from the military in 1996, he was with Friends University, Wichita, KS, as site director of two Adult Education sites in the Kansas City area and was also adjunct faculty, teaching management, business and leadership courses for Friend’s degree completion program. He taught business software courses for Longview Community College and graduate courses for Baker University. He retired from Friends University in 2005 after 10 years of service. He and Jo Ann volunteered at St. Luke’s East Lee’s Summit Hospital, and the Veterans Administration Hospitals in Kansas City and St. Louis, MO.
Allen is a member of the Manchester United Methodist Church, Ballwin, MO, a Life Member of the U.S. Army War College Alumni Association, American Legion Post 208, Ballwin, MO and the VFW.
In lieu of flowers, donations to Dr. Joel Perlmutter, Parkinson’s Research, Campus Box 8111, 660 South Euclid, St. Louis MO 63110 or Christion Brothers College High School, St. Louis, MO are suggested.
Interment: Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery. A celebration of Allen’s life will be held at a later date. Services provided by Kutis Funeral Home, 5255 Lemay Ferry Road, St. Louis, MO 63129.