Fallen Hero SSGT Allen R. McKenna Jr., United States Army

SSGT Allen R. McKenna Jr.

July 7, 1983 - February 21, 2012
United States Army

This dedicated soldier who died in Afghanistan was an avid outdoorsman who loved his family and military life. I was fortunate enough to meet Allen's mother, Connie Mitchell, when my husband and I recently delivered this portrait to her in Oklahoma. It was our pleasure to meet her.

Connie loved the portrait, and to say she was appreciative is an understatement. She loved sharing details of Allen’s life with us. Starting with the fact that he was always very adventurous, Connie states, “If he fished or hunted any kind of animal, he cooked it himself on a campsite.” Following his graduation from Noble High School Allen married, and he and his wife Lindsey had three children. The youngest, Waylon, was born a few months before Allen lost his life. Fortunately 'dad' was able to be there for his son's birth. States Connie, "Being a father was so important to Allen. He was the best dad ever!" And to the delight of those around him, among Allen's many interests and talents was the ability to sing and write his own songs.

The family had lived in Alaska for several years where they all enjoyed the adventurous outdoors, before moving back to Oklahoma.

"The military was a natural choice for Allen" , said his mother, “He had his clothes ironed by five a.m. That boy loved it. He just always had a love for the military, the discipline and the way they hold their heads high. He also took college courses while in the Army to advance his career.”

His mother and other family members looked forward to getting calls from Allen while he was in Afghanistan. Connie remembers, “I would jump up at three a.m. to answer it, he would play his guitar and sing me a song he had written.”

Staff Sgt. Allen R. McKenna Jr. was 28 years old.

Portrait sponsored by:
- Hoff Funeral & Cremation Service, St. Charles, Minnesota