George Allison

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George Edward Allison 1928-2014 George Edward Allison passed away at the age of 86 on Saturday, July 12, 2014, surrounded by his family at home in Arroyo Grande. George was a loving husband, father, grandfather, friend and inspirational coach. George was a gifted athlete, who displayed a competitive spirit throughout his life. In high school he received 12 varsity letters in five sports: football, track, tennis, basketball and baseball, and later in his life was inducted into the McMinnville High School Hall of Fame for his athletic accomplishments, as well as the El Monte Unified School District Athletic Hall of Fame for his coaching and leadership legacy. After enlisting in the U.S. Army in 1946 and deploying to Korea, George attended Oregon State University where he played basketball, tennis and was the President of his fraternity. During this time he met the love of his life, MaryLou Knowles. They married in 1952 in their hometown of McMinnville, Oregon and headed to Southern California where they raised their three daughters. George taught his daughters tennis and ping pong at an early age. He would spot them 19 points during ping pong games and beat them 21-19 every time, with a smile on his face. The family built a tennis court in their backyard and George would give his daughters lessons and play a regular group of friends every Saturday. Besides family, coaching and sports were George's passion and he led several tennis and basketball teams to CIF championships while at Arroyo and El Monte High Schools. He eventually accepted an administrative position as the Assistant Principal at El Monte High School and retired from the school district in 1983 after 30 years. George's retirement years were spent in Sedona, AZ and Arroyo Grande where George and MaryLou enjoyed an active and social life together, playing bridge, tennis, going to the gym and hosting dinner parties. George always enjoyed a glass of red wine, a funny story, and time spent with his daughters and their families. George was one of those rare individuals without enemies; everyone he came into contact with loved his kind, gentle and funny personality. He had a big, warm smile that he shared frequently. George is survived by his wife and best friend MaryLou; daughters and their husbands, Heidi (Larry), Nancy (Steve) and Sara (Brian); grandchildren Nathan, Evan, Casey and Sasha; brothers Bob and Jim Allison; brother-in-law Keith Phelps, and extended family members and close friends. A celebration of George's life will be held on Saturday, September 6, 2014 in Arroyo Grande. Sign his guestbook at
Published in San Luis Obispo Tribune on July 20, 2014
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