William (Bill) B. Allen, 88, passed away quietly Tuesday afternoon. Bill was given many years of great health but the last few months have been tough on Bill and Anne, his wonderful wife.
Bill did not squander or doddle away those many years but used them in service; service to his profession, community, our nation, family, friends, Brainerd Kiwanis, Gideons, First Presbyterian Church and who knows what I may have not listed. But most of all, Bill served his Lord Jesus Christ.
Bill was a Gideon and no one knew the Guidebook better than Bill. Those rules that we as Gideons live by to walk the fine line that the ACLU, Freedom from Religion and others love to see us allegedly cross and call foul. But Bill understood the mission of the Gideons and of all Christians, the spreading of the Gospel. Bill spent his life doing that by word and example. Bill was an example of temperance and encouragement; attributes I also attributed to my father.
Bill was an engineer and often carried his usual pocket-protector with an array of pens, pencils and items of necessity. But Bill also carried the small Gideon Testament and was quick to hand out the Word whenever possible with the plan for salvation. That was given with Bill’s hope and prayer that it would be taken to heart for the recipient.
So, Friday, we lay the earthly remains of William (Bill) Allen to rest in the National Cemetery. Bill would consider that resting place an honor for himself; but, the honor is ours. You see, Bill served in WWII and was there to see the flag raised on Iwo Jima. He loved to tell the stories and how interesting they were. Bill will be missed but his deeds will remain. He has influenced many lives and certainly been a great saint. Character, commitment, duty, honor, compassion, morality, spirituality and on and on, Bill was of the greatest generation. We need more like Bill Allen. A true servant. A great citizen. A wonderful human being committed to others.