Obituary: Wade Allen

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9/8/1978 – 10/14/2021
Wade Allen, 43, of Lawrence, KS passed away on October 14, 2021. Wade was born September 8, 1978 in Topeka, KS to Virgil and Ellen Simon Allen. Wade was born to the Kickapoo tribe of Horton, KS. He received his tribal name, Web-Wah-Duc, in honor of his late ancestor, Pascal Samqua – a long held naming tradition of the Kickapoo tribe.

Wade had the warmest soul and shared his big love to everyone he met. He is remembered for giving the best hugs, being an [overly] enthusiastic dance partner, and holding conversations with so much love and intent that you felt like you were the most special person in the world. He never met a stranger and never said a bad word about anyone.

Wade joins his best friend and brother, Eric, in the afterlife. Eric, being 8 years older, held a strong influence over Wade. As kids, they kept Ellen and Virgil on their toes. Wade and Eric used to love playing rodeo, hogtying the placid goats (all named Jimmy) in their backyard and using Eric’s weightlifting belt as a coveted Rodeo Championship Belt Buckle. They loved baking the ol’ 4 brownie Allen family recipe – if you cut a 9×13 inch pan into 4 pieces, there is really no capacity to share with anyone. When a young, impressionable Wade received $2 from the tooth fairy, Eric convinced Wade his money would best be spent paying Eric for a haircut. Ellen described the outcome as a “tragedy” and like “someone had gnawed on Wade’s little head”. The two were thick as thieves.

Wade was a problem solver. When Wade wanted something, he made it happen. As a child, he begged his parents for a spotted cat. When the family finally brought home a spotless cat from the shelter, Wade was disappointed but not despaired. With a touch of inspiration, he spray-painted the most immaculate and rare blue spotted cat that Baldwin City had ever seen.

Wade excelled at everything he did. He was brilliantly smart, wildly popular, and gifted at every sport. At age 8, he placed second in the State of Kansas wrestling competition in his weight division. He was the starting pitcher for the AAU traveling Dodgers baseball team in middle school and still holds the school record for the discus throw at Baldwin Junior High School. He won a State Championship title in the javelin for Baldwin High School. He once tried to put the 150 some-odd medals he accumulated on his letter jacket but the fabric couldn’t carry the weight of his athletic excellence.

Wade was recruited by 7 out of 12 schools in the 1996-1997 Big 12 conference to play football [KU, K-State, Colorado, Nebraska, Missouri, Iowa, and Oklahoma State] as well as West Point and the Air Force Academy. He received half a dozen more other offers across the country but a knee injury his senior year kept him from competing in Division I football. He was known at surrounding schools as “The Chief” and “The Rock” for his command on the field.

Wade graduated from Baldwin High School in 1997 as the star athlete of his class and homecoming king. He ultimately attended Emporia State University where he became a 2x All American in the hammer throw and was awarded the Track Athlete of the Year. He was really, really good at throwing things. He graduated from ESU with a degree in education in 2002.

Wade met the woman of his dreams, Katie Bell, on June 22, 2004. They bonded over their shared love of throwing things (read: javelin). They loved spending weekends at Lone Star Lake, their annual float trips, singing karaoke in the garage, and hosting driveway parties with their neighbors and best friends, Aaron and Megan Hall. Their love was infectious to everyone in their orbit.

Wade and Katie married on September 16, 2006 and together they had three beautiful daughters: Emma (Elmo), Hannah (Hannimal), and Ellie (Booty Booty). Wade loved teasing his girls and being their Brown Bear. All three referred to him as the silliest, goofiest, and most special dad they had ever had.

His family loved him for all of his quirks: his obsession with the Hunting Channel, his disgust for pie because “it makes my teeth feel like they’re wearing tiny sweaters”, and his determination to gift his personal household items to friends that didn’t want or need them. He was an extremely skilled carpenter and enjoyed saying “I like to make things pretty!” with a big smirk on his face. He loved giving out nicknames, a ‘80s hair band ballad, arm wrestling, and flexing at parties.

Wade was our gentle giant. He loved his wife and daughters fiercely and proclaimed everyone he met his sibling. He packed his life full of big hugs, heart to heart conversations, and relentless teasing. His big, big love will be missed by so, so many.

Wade is survived by his wife, Katie Bell Allen, three beautiful daughters: Emma, Hannah, and Ellie Allen of Lawrence, KS; his parents, Virgil and Ellen Simon Allen of Baldwin City, KS; and multiple aunts, uncles, cousins, and endless friends whom he adored and adored him in return. He is preceded in death by his brother, Eric; paternal grandparents, Ira and Ruby Allen; and maternal grandparents, Richard and Estelle Simon.

A celebration of life will be held at Abe & Jake’s Landing [8 E 6th St., Lawrence, KS 66044] on Sunday, October 24th at 1pm. A traditional Kickapoo graveside service will be held at Kennekuk Church in Horton, KS on Saturday, October 30th at 10am.
In lieu of flowers, Wade’s family appreciates memorial contributions made to the Allen Girls’ Education Fund, and left in care of the Warren-McElwain Mortuary at 120 W. 13th St., Lawrence, KS 66044. Donations may also be made digitally at

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