Courtesy Town of Collierville
Collierville Alderman Tom Allen passed away peacefully at his home on Tuesday, July 21, 2020. Allen was diagnosed with Stage IV pancreatic cancer earlier this summer and had recently announced his plans to resign his alderman position. Tom Z. Allen was 84 years old and served as a Town Alderman for 14 years.
**UPDATE** A visitation for Mr. Allen will be held Sunday, July 26, 2020 from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm at Germantown Church of Christ, 8723 Poplar Pike, Germantown, TN 38138. Funeral services will follow at 3:00 pm, and a private burial will occur at Memorial Park Southwoods Cemetery.
“My condolences to Mrs. Allen and the family. Thank you to Alderman Allen for his many years of dedicated service to the Town of Collierville,” said Mayor Stan Joyner.
Allen was first elected in 2006. His proudest moments in office included the development of the Collierville Schools system, and the openings of the Linda Kerley Center and new Collierville High School.
“Alderman Allen was a true friend to the citizens of Collierville. He exemplified servant leadership and fought for traditional values that he held dear. He has finished his race, but his hard work will be appreciated by many for years to come. Our prayers and thoughts are with his precious wife and family today,” said Alderman Billy Patton.
Tom was also proud to serve during a time when smart growth was a crucial component for the Town’s future.
“Alderman Allen spent quite a bit of time in my office over the years talking about general business matters and what industries best suit Collierville. He always had the best interests of the citizens top of mind. I will truly miss those interactions with Tom,” said John Duncan, Economic Development Director.
Allen and his wife of 56 years, Getella, moved to Collierville in 1989, when the Town’s population was just over 14,000 residents. The Allens built their life in Collierville having two children, and today, five grandchildren and one great grandson. Allen owned a computer store and then worked as a regional manager for Arcadian Corporation for thirty years before retiring in 1997.
“I am saddened with the news of Tom’s passing. He was a strong advocate of seniors rights, our police and fire departments, and I enjoyed serving with him on the board. He will be missed by many,” said Alderman John Stamps.
Before becoming an elected official, Allen was an active community volunteer.
“Tom loved Collierville and all the many volunteers who helped make Collierville the amazing Town that we are today. He truly loved serving the people,” said Vice Mayor Maureen Fraser.
He is a founding member of the re-established Collierville Republican Club and served as the President. He was a charter member of the Schilling Farms YMCA and a charter member and Vice President of the Collierville Lion’s Club.
“Tom loved the community and was very passionate in serving it’s residents and of his service to our county by serving in our armed forces,” said Alderman John Worley.
Allen is also a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, as a U.S. Army Veteran who served in the Korean War.
“Tom was a mentor, friend, warrior, he was so much to so many. You could always count on Tom for an unbiased opinion. America lost a hero!” said Brian Walker, Senior Vice Commander State of Tennessee Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Throughout his fourteen years in elected office, Allen served on the Comprehensive Land Use Plan Committee, Collierville Planning Commission, the Industrial Development Board, Library Board, Collierville Arts Council, Parks Advisory Board, and the Design Review Commission. He is also a graduate of Leadership Collierville.
Many Town employees know Allen by his frequent presence visiting different departments, but also by a familiar sound.
“You could always hear him coming down the hall long before you saw him when he came in to see ‘what’s new’. He would hum what sounded like hymns as he walked around to try and get an idea of the types of issues he would be facing in the weeks to come at upcoming public meetings,” said Town Planner Jaime Groce.
All is a bit quieter today without Tom Allen.