On Tuesday April 15, 2014 Allen, beloved husband, father, brother, and son lost his fourteen month long battle with stomach cancer. He passed peacefully at the Veterans Affairs Hospital at Fort Miley in San Francisco, with family by his side. Allen was born May 20, 1983 in Roseville California. He lived in Granite Bay until 1996 when he moved with his family to Healdsburg. He attended Healdsburg schools and graduated from Healdsburg High School in 2001. He also attended Santa Rosa Junior College for over two years. During high school Allen became interested in helping others. He joined the Fire Explorer program at the Healdsburg Fire Department. After graduation he became a reserve firefighter with the city. During this time he attended the Firefighter 1 Academy at Santa Rosa Junior College earning his firefighting certification. Allen met the love of his life, Laura Dietz, in Healdsburg while working as a firefighter in 2005. They married on July 8, 2006. In August of 2005 Allen joined the Air National Guard 129th, Rescue Wing at Moffett Field as a reservist. In September of 2006 Allen deployed to Iraq for Operation Iraqi Freedom serving with the Security Forces near Kirkuk. After returning home, he asked for a "Family Meeting" with his parents. He told them that he had a deep need to help the many soldiers that he saw injured in Iraq during his first tour. He then enlisted with the United States Army as a combat medic in August of 2007. In March of 2008 Allen and Laura moved to his new assignment in Grafenwoehr Germany. In December 2008 he began a second tour in Iraq serving with the combat infantry unit HHC Task Force 3-66 AR Black Nights. He was then hand selected to be the Senior Company Medic for Apache Company, Alpha 2-28 Infantry or often referred to as "Doc." In August 2011 Allen completed his Army enlistment and he and Laura returned to Healdsburg. Allen then started a different career path as a trekking guide for California Alpine Guides and returned to college to obtain a degree in Outdoor Education. Allen trekked on three different continents, with the Andes being one of his most memorable. Allen spent as much time as possible in the outdoors and during his downtime from guiding and college work he enjoyed backpacking and rock climbing with his wife and friends. Just prior to his diagnosis of cancer he also returned to another vocation that he loved, firefighting. He always said the Healdsburg Fire Department was one of his favorite places to be. The fire service had a special place in his heart as it gave him the opportunity to again help others. While in the hospital, Allen's wife, Laura, gave birth to their beautiful daughter, Sierra Rose. Allen said she was "truly the best medicine of all." Allen is survived by his loving wife, Laura, his 14-month-old daughter Sierra, father and mother, Vern and Teresa, sister Whitney Werner (Luke), grandmother Martha, aunts Vannessa, Melissa and Susie, uncles Lloyd, Elvis and Terry, cousins James, Kyle (Stef), Dan, and Rachel, his many friends, and military and fire service "brothers and sisters". The family wishes to thank the Healdsburg community and all of the staff, nurses, and doctors at the Veteran's Affair's Hospital in San Francisco for all of the care and support over the last fourteen months. A "Celebration of Allen's Life" will be held on May 4, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. at the Villa Chanticleer, 1248 N Fitch Street, Healdsburg, CA. Request any donations in honor of Allen's memory be made to: CERES Community Project (http://www.ceresproject.org/), No Stomach For Cancer (http://www.nostomachforcancer.org/) The Yosemite Conservancy (http://www.yosemiteconservancy.org/)
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Published Online in the Press Democrat from Apr. 23 to May 3, 2014