Published in the January 22, 2016 edition

RICHMOND HILL, Ga. — John Spaulding Allen, 70, passed away at home with family by his side on Jan. 11 due to complications from cancer.

He was born on Jan. 17, 1945 in Melrose to Helen and Ralph Allen.  After graduating from Defiance College, he earned a master’s degree in rehabilitation from Bowling Green State University.

He married Leann Monica Royal on June 13, 1970 and the couple made their home in Elida, Ohio.  He spent his career working with the State of Ohio Department of Mental Health and Corrections serving many years as the CEO of the Oakwood Forensic Center.

Service was important to John and he faithfully served his community through civic organizations such as the Lima Management Club, Lima Rotary Club and the Lima Area Tennis Association.  A talented musician and storyteller, his many friends and family will always remember his passion for making people happy.

In 2002, Leann and John retired to Richmond Hill, Ga., just outside of Savannah, so John could pursue his love of being on the water and on the golf course. He loved spending time with his family, especially his three grandchildren who knew him as “Papa.”

He is survived by his wife, Leann of Richmond Hill, Ga. He is also survived by his son, Matthew and daughter-in-law, Melinda; their sons Brayden and Avery and daughter Leighton all of Savannah, Ga. He is also survived by his sister Susan (Dixie) Clark of Melrose and many loving in-laws, nieces, nephews and cousins.  He was preceded in death by his parents Helen S. and Ralph W. Allen and his brother Ralph W. Allen II.

A Celebration of Life will be held by the family on Friday, Jan., 22 at 1 p.m. at the Savannah Golf Club. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be sent to Hospice Savannah.