Ted Tipton Allen passed away peacefully on Monday, September 3, after a short illness, valiantly fought. He was born March 22, 1932, in McKenzie, Tennessee, son of Cornell Tipton and Lenora (Wynns) Allen, who preceded him in death. His natural surroundings in rural Tennessee inspired his passion for biology and ornithology (the study of birds).
His parents moved the family to Miami, Florida, where Ted completed high school at Miami Edison. He earned his Bachelor in Biology in 1954 from Murray State College in Kentucky. He then served in the U.S. Army for two years at Landstuhl, Germany army base, where he earned his marksmanship badge and worked as a medical lab technician. Spare hours were spent in the surrounding forests and trails exploring local plants and animals. He took advantage of his weekend leaves by hopping flights and trains to cities around Europe, and his love of travel was born.
1958 was a big year for Ted: He earned his Master of Science in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin, and married his wife of 50 years, Suzan Mary O'Brien (deceased). They moved to Florida, where Ted achieved his Doctorate of Philosophy in Biology from the University of Florida.
Ted and Sue had two children: Jeff (deceased) and Craig, who would become Ted's eager travel partner. Together, they traveled to many corners of the world, most notably, Australia and New Zealand, Alaska, the Galapagos Islands, Belize, Costa Rica, and Ted's no. 1 bucket-list destination, Papua New Guinea (to see the birds of paradise). They adopted Willie Nelson's "On the Road Again" as their theme song for their many adventures.
During his 47 years as a professor at Jacksonville University, Ted inspired his many students of biology, anatomy, physiology, embryology, and ornithology. He enjoyed playing softball, volleyball, football, and basketball in the JU intermural leagues, demonstrating his competitive nature, strong sense of teamwork, and leadership. He cherished the opportunity to play with faculty and students alike, and later with his son Craig on the Whales basketball team.
In 1979, the City of Jacksonville presented Ted with the Adams Environmental award for his work at Tree Hill Nature Center, which he co-founded in 1971.
People knew Ted for his quick dry wit, his intelligence, and his interest in history and the world around him. A talented artist and dancer, he was a beautiful, thoughtful, fun soul who lived life to its fullest.
He is survived by his son, Craig (and wife, Tara); brother, Ken (and wife, Carol); and many beloved cousins and nieces.
A teacher to the end, it was Ted's wish to donate his body to the University of Florida medical school.
A celebration of his life will take place in Jacksonville at a later date.
In lieu of flowers or other remembrances, the family requests that donations be made in Ted's memory to Tree Hill Nature Center or B.E.A.K.S. (Bird Emergency Aid & Kare Sanctuary).
Also in Ted's memory, please appreciate the nature that surrounds you. Look up, look around, and listen. There's a whole world of wonderment just waiting to be enjoyed.
Please Sign the Guesbook @ Jacksonville.com
Published by Florida Times-Union on Sep. 6, 2018.