Allen Furfine


Allen Furfine

United States Military Veteran

Allen Furfine, Sept. 28, 2021

Loving husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and friend, passed away on Tuesday, September 28 at the age of 94. He was the grandson of Jewish immigrants who landed at Ellis Island in the 1890s. The oldest of three children, he was the first to graduate college in the family, obtaining an engineering degree from Purdue University, followed by a post-graduate degree from Washington University. He served in the U.S. Navy, working on the development of radar technology, and then embarked on a long and successful career at McDonnell Douglas Corporation, where he worked on varied projects, including designing guidance systems for NASA’s Mercury and Gemini missions, as well as developing medical testing equipment.

A staunch civil rights activist and member of the N.A.A.C.P., Allen marched with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Alabama. His deepest-held values were honesty and fairness, family and community.

Allen thoroughly enjoyed his retirement. His passion for learning led to countless hours of volunteerism throughout St. Louis. He fulfilled his life-long passion for art by serving first as a docent for the St. Louis Art Museum and then later as a Docent Board Member. He was dedicated to continuing education as a regular participant in Washington University’s Lifelong Learning Institute as both a student and class facilitator. He was particularly proud of his four-part course on telescopes. Allen was founder and organizer of the Investors’ Round Table Association, a member of the Jewish Alliance for Justice and Peace, St. Louis Zoo Friends, St. Louis Symphony enthusiast, proud Washington University Alumni Association member, and devoted endless hours contributing to OASIS. He served as a substitute teacher in private schools throughout St. Louis, and in volunteer organizations teaching English as a second language. When he moved to the Gatesworth, he was one of the first to volunteer to be part of their Table Wisdom, a new program bringing together English-language learners and older adults. In 2007, Allen was distinguished and recognized as one of St. Agnes’ Ageless Remarkable St. Louisans. While not volunteering, Allen traveled the world.

Allen was preceded in death by his parents (Abe and Lulu Furfine), and his wife (Leatrice Furfine). Allen is survived by his sister Sonya (the late Milton) Rudy, and brother Charles (Carolyn) Furfine, his first wife (Sandra Wolf), his five children—Matthew (Debora) Furfine, Cynthia Lewis, David (Donna) Furfine, Lisa Furfine, and Craig (Natalie) Furfine—eight grandchildren—Jason (Lynsey) Lewis, Kate Lewis, Chloe (Michael) Orta, Corinne Furfine, Camille Furfine, Sophia Furfine, Jacob Furfine, and Grace Furfine—and three great-grandchildren—Norah Lewis, Jasper Lewis, and Walker Orta. A special thank you to his caregivers at McKnight Place.

Services will be held at Chevra Kadisha Cemetery, 1601 North & South Rd. on Sunday, October 3, at 1:00 p.m. Friends and family who cannot attend may participate in the service via Zoom.  Please visit for more information. Any contributions to Washington University or the organization of your choice Allen would appreciate. A RINDSKOPF-ROTH SERVICE