He was born and raised in Drew and was the valedictorian of his high school class. He received his undergraduate degree from Louisiana State University. In 1943, he enrolled in Officer Candidate School of the United States Army and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant. He served in the Pacific Theater until the war ended in 1945. Allen pursued business interests in Shreveport, La and Savannah, Ga. before moving to Memphis in 1952. There, he entered the insurance industry, retiring as a partner in the firm of Marx and Bensdorf.
Allen’s diligent work and outstanding integrity on behalf of his clients were rewarded by a loyal and devoted client base his entire career. Allen had a lifelong interest in the arts and supported and maintained membership in a variety of Memphis organizations including the Dixon Gallery, the Brooks Museum, the Memphis Symphony Orchestra and Opera Memphis. He had been a member first, of the Memphis Rotary Club and, later, the Germantown Rotary Club. He was also a member of the Wolf River Society. He served on the boards of Temple Israel, the Jewish Community Center, Plough Towers, and the Memphis Jewish Federation. He endowed the Allen E. Cohen Speaker Series at the Jewish Community Center, which brings renowned writers on topical subjects to Memphis each year.
He was a devoted member of Temple Israel in Memphis, where he served on many committees, including the Brotherhood, participated in various fundraising endeavors, as well as serving several terms on the governing board.
Allen loved travel. In addition to his tour of the Pacific in World War II, Allen was a frequent visitor to Europe, the Middle East and Asia.
Most important to Allen was his family and many friends. He was a loving and generous cousin and delighted in attending family and holiday events throughout each year.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Rebecca and Philip Cohen.
He is survived by his cousins, Jerry (Louise) Sklar; Ron(Linda Ellen) Sklar; Joel (Stephanie) Sklar and their sons, Benjamin and Drew; Adam Sklar; Cara Sklar; Beth Sklar; Jon and Jennifer Levingston and their daughters, Katherine, Madeleine and Sarah; Jackie (Bill) Leone, Miami, Fla.; Ruthie (Bernie) Nachman, Jacksonville, Fla.; Nate (Connie) Miller, Fairbanks, Alaska, and Bruce Levingston, N.Y.
A Memorial Service will be held at 3 p.m.. Sunday, March 3, 2013 in the Danziger Chapel of Temple Israel at 1376 East Massey Rd. in Memphis.
Memorials may be made in memory of Allen E. Cohen to Temple Israel, 1376 East Massey Rd., Memphis, TN, 38120 or a charity of the donor’s choice.