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ALLEN K. PARRISH Allen Parrish, known in his early years as the "Country Boy Auto Ambassador" and "Mr. Automotive", died November 6th at the age of 96 ½ at home in Hobe Sound, Florida, surrounded by his family, after a long and valiant struggle with cancer. Formerly of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, he was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years, Vivian Knutson Parrish. Allen was born in Humphreys County, Tennessee to Zetta Belle and Isaac Parrish, a circuit riding Presbyterian preacher. He is survived by his three daughters: Sandra Ebling (Walter) of Bloomfield Hills, Mi., Karen Brown ( Bill) of Springfield,Va., Sonja Kropff of Hobe Sound, Fl., seven grandchildren, thirteen great-grandchildren and his 101 year old brother, Ike, of Mesa, Az. Al loved sales and eventually formed Parrish Products, a worldwide distributor of radio controlled garage doors. He worked his way up in the automotive business and was instrumental in the development of innovations, such as the power steering pump for his company, Federal Industries. TRW, Inc.,the automotive and aerospace company, acquired his company, where Al ultimately became vice president in charge of worldwide automotive customer requirements. During his more than 40 years of service with TRW and its predecessor companies, he was universally respected by his peers, who honored him by electing him Chairman of the Automotive Hall of Fame. He was active in his community and churches. He was a former member, elder and one of the founders of Camp Skyline, part of the First Presbyterian Church in Birmingham, Michigan. Allen was also a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Tequesta, Florida and Spruce Presbyterian Church of Spruce, Michigan. He was a member of the Birmingham 44 Masonic Lodge, Detroit Moslem Shriners and former life member of Oakland Hills Country Club in Birmingham, Michigan. Al also served as President of Lost Lake Woods Club in Lincoln, Mi. He loved his family, proud of his country heritage, enjoyed his life in the automotive world, worldwide travels and hunting and fishing, but to him there was nothing like spending time at his ranch in northern Michigan. He loved his horses and spent his earlier years riding in horse shows and leading parades, In his retirement years, he enjoyed riding the horses around the ranch and watching the thousands of trees grow that were planted on his tree farm. Allen had a demeanor of a true gentleman, at ease with his accomplishments and generous spirit. He will be missed by his family and friends. A Celebration of His Life will be held at a later date in Tequesta, Florida and Spruce, Michigan. Memorial donations may be made to Kristi's Christmas (in memory of Allen's late granddaughter), West Springfield Rotary Foundation, P.O. Box 2097, Springfield, Va., 22152 Paid Obituary
Published in the TC Palm on Nov. 11, 2012