Mr. Allen passed away Wednesday, May 21, 2014, from pneumonia and other medical complications, at the age of 90. Bill was born April 16, 1924, in Green Sea, S.C.
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He is survived by his wife, Jean Allen; his former wife, Nell Allen, and their children, Gary, Randy, Jeanne, Carter and Shawn; his daughter, Betty Jo; sister, Rita Collins and 18 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
Bill was a veteran of World War II and served as a gunner in the U.S. Navy. He later attended Hills Business College in Oklahoma City. After moving to Charlotte in 1949, Bill built his accounting practice, later being elected president of the North Carolina Society of Accountants. Showing an early entrepreneurial flair, as a sideline business, he brought rock 'n' roll to Charlotte with entertainers including Sam Cooke, Jackie Wilson, Jerry Lee Lewis, the Everly Brothers, Brenda Lee and many other top artists during that era. He was a founding partner bringing ice hockey to Charlotte with the Charlotte Clippers, also serving as treasurer for the team.
In 1959, Bill began his land development business. While a sideline at first, it grew into his primary business. Using his promotional skills learned with his rock 'n' roll promotions, he began hiring touring groups of country-western artists from Nashville, Tenn., to perform on site at his land development weekend grand openings. He was the first to use a mobile radio station with their top disc jockeys to promote on site. Bill developed over 100 residential communities, including 23 of the earliest developments on Lake Norman.
Bill spawned three generations of land developers, benefited hundreds of employees and contractors and their families and proved to be one of the most prolific promoters and innovators in the land development business.
The family would like to extend their thanks to his care givers, Arlenda Bell, Marie Bittle and his niece, Amber Collins for all their time and attention that was given to Mr. Allen.
The family received friends Friday evening, May 23, at Hankins & Whittington. Graveside services are private.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be made to the
Arrangements are in the care of Hankins & Whittington Funeral Service, 1111 East Blvd. Charlotte. Please share condolences online at www.hankinsandwhittington.com.
Hankins & Whittington
1111 East Boulevard
Charlotte, NC 28203
Published in The Brunswick Beacon from May 29 to June 4, 2014