Dr. Richard Edwin Allison, 90, of Ashland, went to be with his Lord and Savior, Saturday October 31, 2020 in the Ohio’s Hospice Life Care Gault Inpatient Unit after a brief illness.
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Richard was born in Burlington, Wisconsin, the son of the late, Ralph and Millicent (Rahn) Allison. His parents relocated to Illinois and Richard was a 1948 graduate of Milledgeville High School. He attended the University of Illinois and began farming. On September 17, 1950 he married the love of his life, Emily Anne Heide in Coleta, Illinois. They spent seventy years together, and in Richard’s words, “she was his constant support and associate in ministry and family.”
In 1956 he enrolled in Ashland College graduating with an AB Degree in 1958. Three years later he received his Master’s of Divinity from the Ashland Theological Seminary. While a student at the seminary, he pastored the Brethren Church at North Georgetown, OH. Following graduation, ordained to Christian Ministry, Richard served as pastor of the Wayne Heights Brethren Church. In 1963 his family moved to Goshen, Indiana to become the head pastor of the First Brethren Church of Goshen. During his years there, he completed work for his Masters in Christian Education from the Associated Mennonite Seminaries of Elkhart, Indiana. In 1968 Richard and his family were involved in the planting of the Jefferson Brethren Church in Goshen Indiana, and he served as pastor until 1976.
In 1974 he received his Doctorate of Ministry from the Consortium of Higher Education Religion Studies; a cooperative venture by twenty-two Ohio seminaries. His family had created a home in Ashland, and he was appointed the Associate Professor of Christian Education at the Ashland Theological Seminary, and later was tenured as a full professor and Director of the Doctoral Studies Program from 1980 to 1994. During his years of teaching, Richard served as interim pastor at the Louisville Brethren Church, and held pastoral seminars in: Argentina, Puerto Rico, Honduras, China, and numerous places in the U.S. He has led numerous tours to the Holy Land and has traveled to Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, England, China, Egypt, and Alaska.
Richard has held memberships in a number of professional organizations such as the Religious Education Association, The National Association of Professors of Christian Education, and the National Ministerial Association of the Brethren Church. He was active in the leadership of the Brethren Church, where he served on the Board of Christian Education, as chair for many years. He also served on Central Council , for the Conference Executive Committee, and two terms as the Moderator of the General Conference in 1969 and 1995. He has taught Bible Classes at Trinity Lutheran Church, Ashland, and was currently a member of the Dickey Church of the Brethren.
Richard is survived by his loving wife Emily; four sons, David (Joellen) Allison and Ray (Theresa) Allison both of Goshen Indiana, James (Terri) Allison of Warren, and John (Judy) Allison of Ashland; 13 grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren; and one expected great-grandson.
In addition to his parents, Richard was preceded in death by his sister Joyce, and granddaughter, Jessica.
Services will be Wednesday November 4, 2020 at 11:00 AM at the Dickey Church of the Brethren with Pastor Jeff Messner officiating. The service will be streamed live on the funeral home’s Facebook page. The family requests anyone attending the service, please wear a mask.
Memorial contributions may be made in Dr. Allison’s memory to the Ashland Theological Seminary, 910 Center Street, Ashland, OH 44805, or Ohio’s Hospice Life Care, 1900 Akron Road, Wooster, OH 44691.
Online condolences may be left to the family by visiting the funeral home’s website at denbowfh.com.
Denbow-Gasche Funeral Home and Crematory is assisting the family with arrangements.