Henry Allen of Charlotte, NC, passed away peacefully early Friday September 21st, at the young age of 78, surrounded by his family.
He was born in Florida, to Leomie and John H. Allen, February 1, 1934 and became head of the family when he was just thirteen after his father died. Henry was proud to be a veteran, and joined the Air Force at seventeen, continuing to support his mother and his sister from overseas.
He came to Charlotte with ten dollars in his pocket, where he lived in a boarding house on The Plaza and worked as a salesman. In 1959 he founded Carolina Time Equipment Co., which continues to thrive and expand with branches all over the country. Henry was a brilliant entrepreneur, a creative businessman, and a devoted member of the community-guided always by his strong faith and natural good humor, which remain his greatest legacy.
His biggest joys in life were his friends and family, who will miss most the family dinners he lovingly prepared every Sunday, experimenting from his collection of recipes and cookbooks. Henry was also known for restoring antique cars, a hobby in which he took great care and brought him much delight, as well as his love of gardening.
An avid, enthusiastic storyteller and conversationalist, he was a self-educated academic who could talk with authority and wit about any subject, including: history, politics, the stock market, music, current events, old movies, and fascinating pieces of trivia. His sharp intelligence was outshined only by his good looks and charisma.
His loved ones will miss most his sense of humor, positive spirit, and energetic approach to life. Henry was a true humanitarian who touched thousands of lives all around the world; he will live on through his celebrated generosity and unfailing kindness.
Henry joins in Heaven his first wife, May Jean Joseph and their two infant sons, Jonathan and Barclay, and is survived by his sister, Alice Mote; four children, (Debra Jones, Jennifer Honeycutt, Michelle Allen, and J.R. Allen); seven grandchildren, (Nicole, Justin, Jason, Jared, Alana, Miles, and Graham); three great-grandchildren, (Evan, Alexis, and Madalyn); and his loving partner, Leigh K. Black. Henry also leaves behind two beloved white German Shepherds, Patton and Rommel ("the generals") and a cat, Drifter, who could only be charmed by him.
A gathering of friends will be held from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Monday evening, September 24th, at Harry and Bryant Company, 500 Providence Road, Charlotte. The funeral service will be held at 2:00 p.m. Tuesday, September 25th at Harry and Bryant. A graveside service will be private for the family.
Memorials may be made to Wounded Warriors (www.woundedwarriorproject.org
) or the