Funeral set for Naperville activist shot in Chicago
Family and friends are preparing to lay to rest Naperville activist Ronald Allen after the 73-year-old was shot to death last week in Chicago.
Services will begin with visitation from 7 to 9 p.m. Dec. 16 at DuPage African Methodist Episcopal Church in Lisle, where Allen had been a member since the late 1970s.
Family members and the church then will host a wake for Allen from 1 to 2 p.m. Dec. 17 with a funeral service to follow.
Allen was shot to death at about 2:20 a.m. Friday while driving on the 1300 block of North Laramie Avenue in Chicago, where he had been visiting friends and playing cards. Chicago police say the investigation into the shooting continues, but they do not have any suspects or information about a possible motive.
Relatives say they have spent the days since Allen's death going through family photos and reminiscing about his life. Two fond moments came as recently as last month, when he got to see the Cubs win the World Series and pray with his family at Thanksgiving, his son Keith Allen said.
"Normally Dad makes me say the blessing, but this year, it was great -- he actually said the blessing over the food," he said.
A longtime DuPage County resident who had called Naperville home for about 10 years, Allen founded A. Allen Insurance Ltd. in Chicago's Austin neighborhood during has career as an Allstate agent. His children say it was common for him to return to Austin to visit friends and play card games such as bid whist, about which he wrote a historical book in 2014.
Allen was active in the DuPage County NAACP and served as a Democratic precinct committeeman. He recently had gotten involved with a police-community relations improvement initiative called Unity Partnership.
Allen's son said Rep. Bill Foster has been among the dozens who have called to comfort Allen's wife of more than 50 years, Carol Jean Allen. He said Foster plans to speak during the funeral ceremony.
Instead of flowers, Allen's family asks donations be made to DuPage AME Church with "Benefit for the Ron Allen Scholarship Fund" in the memo line.