Darlene Labay Allen, 93, of Bible Grove died Friday, July 20, 2018 at Blessing Hospital in Quincy.
She was born the daughter of Casper Paul and Wanda (Davis) Smith on March 17, 1925 in Wapello County, Iowa – east of Ottumwa in the Eldon/Blakesburg area.
She lived on different farms in Southeast Iowa, which provided many rural experiences, including caring for livestock, gardening, helping raise her nine younger brothers and sisters, showing cattle at the local 4-H, sewing, cooking, canning, and learning the values of hard work.
She married Harvey Allen, Jr. on October 12, 1943 before he left to fight on the Pacific Front. Darlene moved to Des Moines to live with her cousin, Helen. She worked in a factory making tents for soldiers until Harvey returned home after the war.
The Allens moved to Wapello, Iowa. A daughter, Amanda Jean, was born in 1947 and a son, Richard Fern, in 1949. The family moved to Bible Grove in 1950. Darlene worked on the farm and was a stay at home mother until her children moved away. She then worked the nightshift at Hollisters in Kirksville, making medical supplies. She worked there several years, before retiring and continuing farming.
Darlene belonged to the Bible Grove Historical Preservation Society, the Scotland County Historical Society, the Bar-B-Rider (Saddle Club), the Rebecca Lodge and was an OATS Bus Member.
She was independent, ornery and proud of it. Darlene loved traveling and visiting family and friends. She treasured all of her dogs and being the life of the party. Darlene was a kid at heart, enjoyed playing with children, watching cartoons and was known as “Granny” to all.
She was preceded in death by her son, Richard Fern Allen; grandson, Travis Boyd Bissell; parents: Wanda Davis Smith Shoemaker and Casper Paul Smith; sisters: Twalla, Ruth and Bonnie; brothers: Leo, Paul and Lorvalle.
She was survived by her daughter: Jeanie (Boyd) Bissell of Memphis; Amber Allen (Tony); great grandsons: Marcus Jenkins and Madax Julian; great-great-grandchildren: Muriyah, Taeghynn and Hoyt; sisters: Donna and Maxine; brother: Morris; many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Funeral services were July 27, at the Gerth Funeral Chapel in Memphis with Mike Wilson, pastor of the Gorin Baptist Church officiating. Clayton Miller, Marcus Jenkins, Bruce Wells, Mike Leino, Kristi Eggleston-Wood and Tom Bunch served as pallbearers. Debbie Seamster, Kylee Johnston, Tasha Eggleston-Wood, Taylar Eggleston-Wood, Angela Johnston, Tom Upton, Lisa Wells, Derek Bradley, Vicki Webb, Beth Leino and Mary Hakala were honorary pallbearers. Burial was in the Memphis Cemetery.
Memorials are suggested to the Travis Boyd Bissell Memorial Scholarship Fund or the Bible Grove Historical Preservation Society and can be left at or mailed to the Gerth Funeral Service, 115 S. Main St., Memphis, MO 63555.
Condolences may be sent to the Allen family by signing the online guestbook at gerthfuneralservice.com.
Arrangements were under the direction of the Gerth Funeral Service.