On June 19, 1933, Charles “Charlie” Alvin Allen was born at his family home in Clarkdale, Arizona, in an area formally known as Butcherville.
He returned to the Lord on Jan. 12, 2019, leaving this earth not far from where he was born. But Charlie traveled far and accomplished much during those 85 years.
He grew up an avid outdoorsman and spent his formative years working as a cowboy on the San Carlos Reservation near Globe, Arizona, learning to speak both Apache and Spanish.
At the age of 16, he altered his age so he could join the U.S. Navy and be trained as a metalsmith and serve his country in the Korean War. He saw the world during his stint in the Navy, but eventually his heart called him back to Arizona, where he worked for Sule’ Steel and Fisher Construction helping to build the Motorola plant and several skyscrapers in Phoenix.
After helping build the Phoenix Cement Plant in Clarkdale, he decided to remain in Clarkdale and take a position at the cement plant, where he became the first President of the Plants Workers Union, later working for Smelter City Iron Works, and finally retiring from Valley Concrete and Materials.
After Charlie retired, he and his friend Bill started sharing with others their knowledge and love of cowboy living and donkeys.
They would take people interested in experiencing a cowboy camp and donkey rides on overnight adventures. Charlie’s Dutch-oven cooking skills were amazing, and his beer biscuits, the best you ever tasted. On a couple of Christmases, Charlie and Bill drove a covered wagon drawn by donkeys through Patio Town to hand out toys to the local children, toys Charlie and Bill bought.
Charlie was also deeply involved in the local community. Over the years he was a volunteer firefighter for the towns of Cottonwood and Clarkdale, Commander of the Cottonwood VFW, member of the local Elks Lodge and devoted member of Calvary Chapel.
When Charlie had a difficult task to complete, he would turn to prayer for strength or guidance. After he had completed the task, he would say “God and I got it done.” He will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved him.
Charlie was proceeded into death by his parents: William and Clara Allen; siblings: Bill Allen and Barbara McPherson; daughters: Sharon Ann, Jaqueline and Elizabeth.
He is survived by his loving wife of 26 years, Phyllis Allen; children with first wife Jeanice: David (Sachiko) Allen, Charles (Jen) Allen, Jerry (Francine) Allen, Christina (Jim) Speros, Jesse Allen, Anne (Jesse) Lee; step-children: Schelly (Rick) Contreras, Jenny (Dan) Jacobs, Jody (Jeremy) Harris, Kim (Ed) Ragel, Rob (Tara) Pruitt, Karen Pruitt; and 30 grandchildren and 30 great-grandchildren.
Services will be held on Friday, Jan. 18, at the Calvary Chapel, located at 465 S. Calvary Way in Cottonwood, Arizona.
Visitation is at 10 a.m., followed by the funeral service at 11 a.m.
An online guestbook is available to sign at www.westcottfuneralhome.com
Information provided by survivors.