Helen E. Allen, 97, Hays, formerly of Ellis, died Monday, July 10, 2017, at Brookdale Senior Living Community.
She was born April 29, 1920, in Hawkeye, Iowa, to the Rev. Claus and Elizabeth (Bunge) Meyn. She graduated from Augustana College in Rock Island, Ill., and while there she sang in the college chorus all four years. She also was a soloist in the Rock Island Lutheran Church Choir. The choir sang in Carnegie Hall, New York City; Orchestra Hall in Chicago; and other concert halls in the east. The Augustana Choir also recorded on RCA Records. After graduation, she taught music in Illinois for three years.
She married Tad Allen in 1945. He preceded her in death in 1950. She earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education at Fort Hays State University and later her master’s degree. She retired from teaching in May 1985 and joined the Retired Teachers Association in Hays and was the song leader for the group. She also gave private piano lessons in her home, continuing until she was 80. She was the choir director at Christ Lutheran Church in Ellis for 25 years. Throughout the years, she sang at funerals as well as solos for church services. She also sang in the Hays and Ellis Community Choirs.
She was an honorary member of the Ellis Rotary Club as a pianist as well as a part-time pianist at the Good Samaritan Society in Ellis. She played piano and organ duets and sang in the choir at Christ Lutheran Church. She was a member of the Young Matrons Club, Delta Kappa Gamma of Hays, 50 years of membership in P.E.O. of Ellis, lifetime member of the Fort Hays Alumni Association, and Christ Lutheran Church of Ellis.
She enjoyed classical music, traveling, gardening and playing cards.
Survivors include a son, Jim Allen and wife, Monica, Indianapolis; a sister; Sylvia Coles and husband, Robert, Buffalo, N.Y.; and three nephews, Dr. Steve Meyn and wife, Heidi, Toronto, Darcy Coles, San Francisco, and Richard Meyn, Springfield, Ore.
She was preceded in death by a son, Warren Allen; a brother and sister-in-law; Drs. Werner and Faye Meyn; a nephew; David Meyn, and a niece; Susan Meyn.
Services will be at 2 p.m. Saturday at Christ Lutheran Church, Ellis.
Condolences can be left for the family at www.haysmemorial.com.