Waynesville, Mary Jane Allen, 90, went to the loving arms of her Lord and Savior on February 15, 2023, at the Maggie Valley Nursing Home.
A native of Bayonne, NJ, she was born on January 22, 1933 and spent her childhood with her loving parents Raymond and Mary Lou Walker and her brother David Walker in Union, NJ, who all preceded her in death. Her grandson Jeff Robert has also passed. Upon her marriage, she lived with her beloved husband Robert (Bob) Allen and their three sons, Stephen, David, and Dana: primarily in Berkeley Heights, NJ for over 30 years.
Mary Jane graduated from Union High School in 1951 and then graduated from the Berkeley Secretarial School, and later attended Rochester University. After raising her three children, she returned to school at the Overlook Hospital Nursing School where she graduated with honors as the leading student in the assistant nursing program. She went on to serve as an operating room nurse at Overlook Hospital in Summit, NJ, specializing in assisting in eye surgery.
Mary Jane was a skilled artist in many fields. Her favorite art was the ancient skill of china painting where she specialized in painting beautiful floral designs. She had numerous exhibitions displaying her china paintings. She also taught the art of china painting in her home. Her works are still displayed in numerous homes in New Jersey. Mary Jane also became a skilled oil and water coloring painter with much of her work being displayed in New Jersey homes. She also took up wood carving, her most ambitious and largest piece being a wood carving of her husband Bob’s face. She next turned her artistic talents to lace making, earning many awards for her beautiful designs.
Later in life, Mary Jane developed an interest in photography and spent many happy hours tramping the woods of New Jersey looking for inspiring pictures of flora and fauna. Besides raising her own three boys, Mary Jane also raised two foster children for over three years as well as caring for newborn foster babies until they were adopted.
After her husband’s retirement as an educator, Mary Jane and Bob moved to the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina in 1993 in Haywood County, where they enjoyed many happy years of retirement.
Mary Jane loved to sing the Lord’s praises. At age 14 she was invited to become a member of the First Baptist Church Adult Choir, and at age 19 was baptized, and then later married at that same church in 1952. She also sang at the Millington Baptist Church Choir, the Evangel Baptist Church Choir, and lastly the Hazelwood Baptist Church Choir. She was a faithful member of the Rachel Sunday School class at Hazelwood. Mary Jane also volunteered in many areas of Haywood County, especially with the Haywood County Memorial Hospital Hospice division for many years.
Surviving her are her three sons, Stephen Allen of Clyde NC, David Allen (Denise) of Dunellen NJ, and Dana Allen (Marie) of Clyde NC; two grandchildren, William Allen and Jennifer Allen.
A celebration of life will be held at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, February19, 2023, at Hazelwood Baptist Church with the Reverend Tim Lolley officiating. Burial will follow at Greenhill Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. prior to the service at Hazelwood Baptist Church.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Hazelwood Baptist Church, 265 Hazelwood Avenue, Waynesville, NC 28786.
The care of Mrs. Allen has been entrusted to Wells Funeral Home of Waynesville