ALBANY -- A busy life came to a close on January 24, 2013 when Reverend Johnny Gene Allen, Sr. was called to his heavenly home. Johnny, one of seven children, was born May 1,1924 in Edison, Georgia (Calhoun County). He was the son of the late Jessie and Georgia (West) Allen.
He accepted Christ at an early age and joined Mt. Ebelle Baptist Church. He received his education in Calhoun County Schools, as well as Randolph County Schools. Later, he enlisted in the United States Army where he saw duty in various bases in the United States and overseas.
Reverend Allen served as a deacon at New Jerusalem Baptist Church shortly after moving to Albany, Georgia. He answered the call early on to become a dedicated minister, and spent his life working to serve God and others. He served as pastor to several churches including Oakgrove Baptist Church (Shellman, Ga.), Ebenezer Baptist Church (Andersonville, Ga.), Bethel Baptist Church (Marshallville, Ga.), St. Peter Missionary Baptist Church (Albany, Ga.) and Macedonia Baptist Church (Fort Gaines, Ga.) in which he served for over 49 years. Using his skills in construction work, he remodeled each church in which he served as pastor. He was a member of First Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church.
Rev. Allen will be especially remembered for his hard work and tenacity as a successful business man. His proudest moment was being featured in the book The Entrepreneurial Spirit of African American Inventors, by Patricia Carter Sluby, which shed light on his humble beginnings and highlighted his many accomplishments. A skilled brick layer, he built several homes for his own family and loved ones. As owner and operator of the Allen Rack Company, he possessed more than 30 U.S. Patents over the last five decades for many of his creative inventions. He also owned and operated Cedar Avenue Grocery and Jackson Street Grocery, two neighborhood convenience stores in the heart of south Albany. In later years, he provided food from the area food bank to his members and to those in need. He will be most remembered as a hard working provider for his family, a devoted father, and a loving grandfather.
He leaves to cherish his memories his wife of 65 years, Betty L. Allen, Albany, Georgia; six children, Johnny (Gloria) Allen, Jr., Albany, Georgia; Brenda Allen, Albany, Georgia; Gregory (Rosie) Allen, Albany, Georgia; Timothy (Zora) Allen, Albany, Georgia; Winfred Allen, Lawrenceville, Georgia; and Beverlyn Allen, Albany, Georgia; 13 grandchildren; 7 great-grandchildren; three sisters, Rushie Bell Johnson, Albany, Georgia; Velvie Lee Trice, Albany, Georgia; and Amanda Booker, Winter Garden, Florida, and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and many devoted friends who will miss him dearly.
He was preceded in death by his parents Jessie and Georgia Allen, his brothers George Allen and David Allen, his sisters Jessie Bell Ellis and Ernestine Brown
The family will receive friends Tuesday during the hours of 4:00 p.m.- 8:00 p.m. at 221 Quail Valley Dr., Leesburg, Georgia 31763.
Meadows Funeral Home