In Memory

Larkin Allen

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06/22/14 11:37 AM #1    

Sandy Shoemaker

Larkin was in my tap dance class during elementary school.  Our class tapped at Donna Lee School of Dance on Patterson Road.   I remember our dance school recital was staged at Kieth's theater one year.  Our class performance was to "Blue Room"  or "Blue Moon" or something like that.  The boys were costumed in blue satin tail - type tuxedos, as I  recall.  The girls were in little blue satin Las Vegas like costumes with sequins, tulle, and tilted hats.  At the end of  our  performance, the dance line struck a pose  when the music stopped, while I did some steps around Larkin, (who was kneeling with one arm in the air, like "tada") and then I sat on his knee with one hand in the air.  Another couple at the other end of the line were doing the same.  I think I was 9 or 10, and I thought, "Lucky me!  He is such a nice cute boy".   I did not know Larkin well in high school, but this was a happy memory of him that I decided to share.   It's so sad that he left us prematurely.    Sandy   

06/23/14 08:15 AM #2    

Larry McCartney

I was with Larken frequently after he and Russ (our name for Sheila Russel) moved to Las Vegas. Lark and myself both worked at my mother's hospital (Grandview, where she was Director of Nursing) as teenagers. He was quite the rascal. We would go to the Green Room (morgue) at lunch time, and see how long we could stay in one of the freezer drawers (where corpses are kept). When we heard the code for a serious arrival in the emergency room, we would go running to the ER. Lark's interest in medicine stemmed from aa serious injury he suffered in a basketball game vs. Lima. He was fascinated by the surgery that was performed and from that time on he wanted to be a surgeon. He did his internship and residency at Grandview. He started his practice in Milwaukee and soon became known as the finest eye surgeon in Wisconsin. He sold his practice, retired to Nevada, so they could be near their children and all was ideal. AND THEN

Larry McCartney

09/05/14 12:19 PM #3    

M. David Minnick

I did not move to Kettering until the start of 9th grade.  Having lived no longer than 3 years in any one place, my father was transferred again at the start of my senior year.  Luckily for me my parents realized what an outstanding high school experience I was having so they allowed me to stay behind to finish my senior year.  It was also lucky that I had enough good friends with families that would let me live a month or so with each of them for the school year. Larkin's family took double duty to make sure I could cover the entire school year.  Larkin had been one of the first people I met in 9th grade.  Little did I realize then what a great stroke of luck that was for me.

Being friends with Larkin Allen was a key factor to enjoying my high school experience.  Of course many people were friends with Larkin.  It seemed to me that Larkin not only knew most everyone in our class, he was friends with them.  For that fact he was friends with many people in the classes ahead of ours which was a complete mystery to me.  It did not matter their age or even if they had little interest in school, Larkin always was laughing and talking with everybody. Larkin made life fun and upbeat to be around him.  His interests ranged from sports to seeing Elvis Presley movies.  He was the first one to turn sixteen that I knew and was the first teenager to take me for a drive. I still remember the exhilaration of that first drive with the windows down and the radio on.  It was so sad to see him die at such a young age.  Larkin was always concerned about others and particularly his family.  Larkin had a son in high school the year he died.  Shortly before his death Larkin apologized to his son that he would not be there for his high school graduation.  As sad as that makes me feel even now when I think about it, I know that the person Larkin was is forever embedded in the memory of his son and will help his son through life.   Larkin is certainly someone that I can see clearly in my memory today.  I can remember the fun of stopping at Sandy's for a milk shake after a summer evening playing basketball with our friends.  I will have these memories for the rest of my life.  My life was better then and is better now because of the times I had with Larkin.  I expect many others can say the same.  He is missed but not forgotten.


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