Allen Raymond did many remarkable things in his 91 years of life on earth. The lifelong Westporter was a philanthropist, tireless volunteer, devoted church member, political leader, and adviser to selectmen. He was also one of the Westport Family Y‘s longest-serving, proudest board members, and a major contributor to the new Mahackeno facility.
He died on May 1 — less than 4 months before tonight’s ribbon-cutting ceremony. But Allen was not only at Mahackeno in spirit — he was really, truly there.
Y officials showed a video of their beloved benefactor. Filmed at Allen’s home in February — when he knew his life was ebbing away — it shows him at his best. He’s smiling warmly, joking gently, speaking lovingly and gracefully.
The new Mahackeno Y will hopefully thrive as long as its downtown predecessor did: 90 years. Yet in the next 9 decades, it’s hard to imagine any moment that can top tonight’s amazing appearance — one last time — by Allen Raymond.(Click here if your browser does not take you directly to YouTube. Filmed, edited and produced by Brian Russell of Red Shoe Film. Aerial footage by Rick Eason.)
Dan, is there a link to the film.
I just added a link below the embedded video, in case your browser does not take you directly to YouTube.
I didn’t know Allen but I was in his daughter Debbie’s class. That video brought tears to my eyes.
Thanks, Dan. Very touching. Too bad he didn’t live to take that first slide.
We will not know a finer Gentleman than Allen Raymond
Thanks for sharing that lovely video, Dan.
How cool is that!?
Thanks, Allen! – Chris Woods
Found it. I’m not too swift.
Thank you the video. Allen was one of the true gentlemen of our town. He was a dedicated and caring man who sincerely did what he thought was best for the community.
A very moving tribute. I did post a message to Debbie Raymond Eskra’s Facebook message thing, and provided the link, but I am not sure she saw it. I lived on Long Lots Road when she and her parents lived there, and I knew Mr. Raymond as the younger man in the video. I can to this day still visualize her mother, Barbara.