Passing of Dennie Allen '70, Virginia Wesleyan's first graduate

09-30-2016

With sadness, Virginia Wesleyan College has learned of the passing of Dennie Allen, VWC Class of 1970, on September 1, at the age of 70. College Archivist Steve Mansfield comments that Allen’s death “evokes notice of a sad VWC milestone. By virtue of his place in the alphabet, Dennie received Virginia Wesleyan's first diploma at our first commencement. His death on September 1 came just a week before our first Founders Day.” Allen was born on May 23, 1946, in Lexington, Virginia. His obituary states that “the day he graduated was the happiest of his life,” and that he “loved to tell people that he was the very first person to receive a diploma from the college.” After retiring from the State of Virginia as a parole officer, Allen spent the rest of his life as a full-time volunteer at Chippenham Hospital. His obituary notes that he was to be laid to rest with his parents in Richmond’s Forest Lawn Cemetery and that memorial contributions may be made to Virginia Wesleyan.