Raymond W. Allen, 87: Longtime teacher gave much to students, community

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PORTLAND — Raymond W. Allen, 87, died Sept. 4.

He was born Sept. 9, 1927, and attended schools in Camden and Portland. Allen then graduated from Boston University, earned a master’s degree at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and completed a doctorate at Tufts University.

He served in the U.S. Army as a covert investigator for three years, traveling extensively throughout Europe. Following his discharge, he returned to Portland in 1952.

Allen dedicated his life to education, beginning his career in a one-room school house in Pownal. He went on to teach mathematics at Portland High School for 22 years, and was instrumental in introducing computer technology to Portland schools.

He was also an all-around athlete who excelled in tennis, swimming, basketball, golf and table tennis, and he loved teaching sports to neighborhood children. He once tried out for the U.S. Olympic swim team, and hand-built a clay tennis court in Deering Oaks Park.

Allen is remembered as a father figure to Harry Strother and his brothers, as a lifelong friend to Arthur Lekousi and Tom Valente, and by his family and many others for his kindness and generosity. He lived an austere life, often depriving himself in order to give to those in need. For many years, he bought Christmas gifts for each child in his neighborhood. He also established a college scholarship for Portland High graduates in the name of Mabel Anderson.

Allen is survived by his “aunt,” Catherine Anderson; his nieces, Elaine, Joanne, Karen, Jane and Lynda; his large extended family; and many friends.

Visitation and a service were held Sept. 11 at Jones-Rich-Hutchins Funeral Home, in Portland, with the Rev. Kenneth Lewis officiating. Interment was to be held privately at a later date in Forest City Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Allen’s memory can be made to the Mabel C. Anderson Memorial Scholarship, Attn: City of Portland, P.O. Box 544, Portland ME 04112.