News: 'Manchus' honor soldier's memory
Story by Spc. Reese Von Rogatsz
JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. – Family, friends and soldiers from 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment of the 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division gathered to solemnly honor the memory of Spc. Robert Joseph Allen at Evergreen Chapel here Aug. 30.
“Today, we are here working through various degrees of grief,” said Capt. William C. Alley, chaplain for the 4th Bn., 9th Inf. Regt., “due to the loss of a son, a husband, a friend, [and] a ‘Manchu’ soldier”.
“Knowing the positive impact his life made on so many, it is appropriate to grieve our loss as we remember Spc. Allen’s life and honor his service to our country,” continued Alley.
Others spoke of his ability to perform well in sport, his love of cars and music, citing conversations they had with his family about the joy and pride their ‘Robby’ brought them.
An integral part of the ‘Manchu’ team, Allen could be counted on to complete the mission, said Capt. Michael Centola, commander of headquarters company, 4th Bn., 9th Inf. Regt.
“He will be missed by those who were lucky enough to have him in their life,” Centola said.
“Spc. Allen was the quiet professional.”
Spc. Robert Joseph Allen was a native of Dade City, Fla., and graduated from Pasco County High School in 2004. He attended One Station Unit Training at Fort Benning, Ga., in 2009 where he completed his training in military occupational specialty 11B, Infantryman.
Assigned to 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment at JBLM, he met his unit at Fort Polk, La., as they completed their mission readiness exercise in preparation for deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. During the deployment, Allen transitioned from his job as vehicle driver to radio telephone operator and operations assistant in the battalion’s S3 (operations) shop.
After the unit completed the historic “Last Combat Patrol” in Iraq in 2010, Allen re-deployed to JBLM and continued his work in operations. He served a critical role during two Yakima Training Center, Wash., rotations and one National Training Center rotation at Fort Irwin, Calif.
Allen’s awards and decorations include the Army Commendation Medal, the Meritorious Unit Citation, the National Defense Service Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal with one Campaign Star, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge.
Allen is survived by his parents, his wife, and two sons.