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Obituary: Dixie Mae Allen

Beloved grandmother, wife, teacher

Dixie Mae Allen, longtime resident of Claremont, died peacefully in her sleep on September 11 at Pilgrim Place in Claremont.

Dixie was born 94 years ago. She attended Chaffey High School where she met Howard P. Allen, the young and dashing student body president. She swept him off of his feet and they were married shortly thereafter.

She took a job as a teacher in Rancho Cucamonga, where she taught first and second grade. The young couple then moved to Northern California, where she taught school, enabling Howard to attend law school at Stanford University, where he became dean of the law school. They eventually returned to Southern California in order to be closer to family.

She and her husband embarked on many business trips and made lifelong friendships along the way, including becoming good friends with Robert Redford, Edwin Meese and Ronald Reagan.

Ms. Allen had a knack for getting her husband to tackle projects that he otherwise wouldn’t. She would urge him on, telling him that he was capable of becoming the CEO of Southern California Edison (a position which he eventually achieved). She also convinced him he could play a major role in bringing the 1984 Olympics to Los Angeles, a dream brought to life when he convinced Peter Ueberroth to become involved. Her indomitable “can-do” spirit brought many possibilities to fruition.

In 1957 the couple welcomed a daughter into the world, Alisa Allen, who quickly became their pride and joy. She was a loving and warm mother who did everything in her power to help her daughter become a well-educated and successful adult. In 1974, Alisa established Karousel Kids, Inc. in Claremont, now the country’s oldest performing arts company featuring children and teenagers.

Her happiness reached new heights when her grandson Allen was born. She spent countless hours playing with him, reading books, introducing him to Legos, and singing and dancing with him in her Claraboya home.

She also exhibited her playful nature when asked to assume roles on the stage. For example, in a production of “Amahl and the Night Visitors” at Claremont High School, she stepped in at the last moment, covering for a performer who became ill. “Dixie looked so youthful that she fit right in with the fourteen- and fifteen-year-olds who were on stage with her.” her family shared. Her proud husband, upon realizing that she was actually standing in for an ill teenager, quickly purchased flowers and brought them to the theatre to cheer on his wife.

Ms. Allen is survived by her loving daughter, Alisa Allen Currier and her husband Mark Currier; and her son Allen Austin Allen and his wife Zoe Allen.

Services will be held on Thursday, September 23 at Todd Memorial Chapel, 570 N. Garey Ave., Pomona. A viewing will begin at 5 p.m., followed promptly by a 6:30 service. Graveside services will be held at 11:30 a.m. the next day, Friday, September 24, at Bellevue Memorial Park, 1240 W. G St., Ontario.

 

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