Allen Albert LARSEN
It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of Allen Albert Larsen on August 5, 2023, in Edmonton, Alberta. Allen was a cherished husband, father, brother, uncle, and friend. We mourn his loss greatly.
Allen was preceded in death by his siblings Greg, Derek, and Judy, as well as his grandson Lewis. He is survived by his wife, Marlene, and their children Carly, Marnie, Nissim, and Greg. Allen was blessed with numerous grandchildren, including Ellis, Viola, Penelope, Kaia, Lina, Lenaya, Leandra, Avalene, Elijah, Izzy, and Romae. He is also survived by his siblings Stan, Marty, Kathy, Margo, Nikki, David, and Michael. Allen leaves behind countless nieces, nephews, extended family members, and friends who will deeply miss him.
As the eldest of 11 children, Allen had a profound love for his mother, Vi, and played a vital role in raising his younger siblings. He loved his own children unconditionally and spent countless hours with them. Allen shared his deep appreciation for the outdoors by engaging in various activities such as traveling, motorcycle riding, flying, cycling, hiking, boating, fishing, quad riding, hunting, and camping. He actively participated in his children’s lives, teaching them to read, helping with their schoolwork, and involving them in his many projects. He dedicated his time to support the numerous groups his children were part of, including Air Cadets, Brownies, Girl Guides, and Forest Rangers.
Allen had an extraordinary level of empathy and altruism. He often assisted individuals in need, whether rescuing people during snowstorms or helping those with broken-down vehicles. He devoted many hours as a volunteer for the Salvation Army Red Shield Appeal, his church, and community.
Some of Allen’s cherished adventures included floating down the Berland River on a 20-man raft, fishing with his brother Stan and their friend Gary, and riding his motorcycle with friends to the Pembina River campground to enjoy a few beers they had packed in their saddlebags. He had a great love for music and enjoyed artists like Judy Collins, Judith Durham, Leonard Cohen, Roger Whittaker, Nana Mouskouri, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, John Denver, Hilltop, ABBA, and more.
In his early twenties, Allen developed a passion for flying and found a sense of freedom in the sky with his own Cessna 170. He often indulged in fly-in breakfasts across Alberta and Saskatchewan and later acquired a Cessna 172, which allowed him to travel to air shows in the USA, particularly his favorite one in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.
Allen embarked on his journey as an aircraft engineer and diligently worked towards earning his AME license. Throughout his life, he dedicated himself to the aviation industry, undertaking various ventures and gaining a wealth of experience. Notably, he flew with Shirley Helicopters in the Beaufort Sea, traversing remote northern locations like Iqaluit, Yellowknife, and the Yukon.
In 1976, Allen moved from Edmonton to Fort McMurray to join Contact Airways. He later relocated to Calgary in 1979, where he seamlessly integrated into Buffalo Airways and successfully converted a military DC3 into a civilian aircraft. Originally planning to stay in Calgary for a year, Allen ended up spending two decades there. After working for Canadian Airlines, he embarked on a thrilling journey with Ranger Oil, taking on various international assignments. Leveraging his engineering expertise, Allen traveled extensively, visiting Sweden, Norway, Ireland, Scotland, England, South Korea, Japan, China, Australia, as well as various parts of Canada and the USA. In 1999, Allen and his family returned to Edmonton, where he joined First Air, contributing significantly for almost fifteen years.
After years of hard work, Allen finally began pursuing his dream of constructing his own hangar and restoring Cessna 185 aircraft. However, his plans were abruptly halted in November 2018 when he was involved in a car accident that resulted in a spinal cord injury. In September of 2019, he underwent a five-and-a-half-hour operation in Germany to implant four artificial discs, which not only saved his life but also restored his mobility. Despite regaining his ability to move, Allen was unable to continue working on his intended projects and lost his cherished ability to fly.
During his final years, Allen found solace in the company of his grandchildren, family, and friends. He thoroughly enjoyed visiting the family farm near Nipawin, Saskatchewan, which held significant historical significance as it was once cultivated by his grandparents and uncles. His love for history was evident through the hours he spent engrossed in reading and watching documentaries.
Allen will be remembered for his deep abiding love for his family, his passion for flying, and his kindness and generosity to others.
A celebration of life will be held at Crosspoint Church, 12235 50 ST NW, Edmonton, on Wednesday, September 6th at 3 PM. Refreshments to follow, everyone is welcome.