Ernest E (Ernie) Allen of Waynesville, NC passed away on Thursday, February 18, 2021. Ernie lived 91 wonderful years.
Ernie was born October 25, 1929 in Atlantic, Iowa. He always liked to add that was the day the market crashed. He ran wild in the country as a young boy. His family moved to Illinois, where, at the age of 13, he met the love of his life, Jeannie. It was several years before he won her heart and she agreed to marry him on September 13, 1952. They had 54 wonderful years together. Ernie served in the US Air Force during the Korean War. He maintained military aircraft on the flight line. Perhaps it was there that his life-long love of flying was cemented. After being honorably discharged from the Air Force, Ernie attended the University of Illinois, where he graduated from the Aviation Program and studied electrical engineering. He found his niche with Chrysler, working on the Redstone rocket in Huntsville, AL. Chrysler sent him to Florida in 1960 to man their fledgling space flight program. Ernie spent 17 years working on the Saturn booster rockets, through the Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, and Skylab programs. He then went to work with Boeing, working on both the B1 Lancer and B2 Stealth bomber. Ernie retired in 1992 and began building churches around the country.
Ernie loved motorcycling all around the country. At the age of 79 Ernie rode his touring bike on a 4000+ miles odyssey from his home in California to Sturgis, SD where his son-in-law Vince and grandson Douglas met him and enjoyed a week of riding thru Wyoming and South Dakota. He enjoyed traveling. He visited Ireland, cruised to Alaska several times, cruised the Panama Canal, toured Egypt, and, also at the age of 79, toured Australia and New Zealand, where he bungee jumped off the Kawarau Gorge Suspension Bridge.
Ernie loved his wife, his family, and his God. He was preceded in death by Jeannie, his wife of 54 years; his son Elan; his sister Rachel and Bob, her husband, his sister Evelyn; his son-in-law Vince and a great-granddaughter, Rosalee Marie.
Ernie is survived by his daughters Julie Torpy and Bessie (Curtis) Hayes; daughter-in-law JulieAnn Allen; sister Esther (Ed) Adkins; five grandchildren; and three great grandchildren.
A Memorial service will be held at 10:00 am Friday June 11, 2021 at the Hamilton Funeral Home in Augusta, IL with Pastor Rick Hertinstien officiating. Burial of cremains will follow at Woodlawn cemetery in Augusta, IL.
The Hamilton Funeral Home in Augusta, IL is handling arrangements.
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