MACKINAW - Thurman Eugene "Gene" Allen, 66, of Mackinaw, Ill., passed away at 1:37 a.m. on Thursday, Aug. 14, 2014, at OSF Saint Francis Medical Center in Peoria, Ill.
He was born on June 5, 1948, in Moko, Ark., the son of Homer and Faye Haslett Allen. He married Nancy A. Neu on Aug. 14, 1976, in Ada, Ohio, at St. Mark's Church. She survives.
Also surviving are his son, Matthew Scott Allen of Oklahoma City, Okla.; and his siblings, Ed Allen, Patsy Markham, John Allen, Peggy Rhoades and Danny Allen, all of West Plains, Mo., Russell Allen of Jay, Okla., Mark Allen of Ada, Ohio, Jeff Allen of Truman, Ark., and Steve Allen, stationed in Norfolk, Va., with the U.S. Navy.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
Gene was a graduate of Miami Valley College and Ohio State University. He worked at BOC Gases for 30 years, retiring in 2003 after a long and rewarding career.
Gene was an avid horseman. After retirement, he was able to dedicate his time to the job he loved of training horses. He served for many years on the board of the Illinois Quarter Horse Association and had served as president for four years. Gene was instrumental in bringing quarter horse racing back to Illinois. He was currently training and racing both thoroughbred and quarter horses.
He was a member of the Nazarene church and the Mackinaw Masonic Lodge.
Gene was also very proud of his strong Cherokee roots.
Gene touched many lives in his journeys and always left a lasting impression. He loved his family, friends, horses and dogs.
A visitation will be held today, Aug. 18, 2014, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Argo-Ruestman-Harris Funeral Home in Eureka. Cremation rites will be accorded. A memorial service will be held at a later date in Oklahoma City, Okla.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, P.O. Box 834, Saratoga Springs, N.Y. 12866.
Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.argoruestmanharris.com.