Obituaries


Allan Noam Williams
WILLIAMS, Allan Noam "Woodie Allan" 04/01/48 - 06/26/09 Allan died peacefully Friday at home surrounded by family and devoted friends. He had pancreatic cancer. His leaving will be felt deeply across Greater Hartford and beyond by environmentalists, charitable organizations and hundreds of children and young adults who grew up under his tutelage to the outdoors and his motto of generosity: "If I can, I do". Allan grew up in Waban, MA graduating from Newton South High School. He earned a BA in History with honors at Northeastern University and an MA in Geography at University of Rhode Island. He retired after 28 years of dedicated service to the CT Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) where he was awarded two Distinguished Service Awards and was credited with being the driving force behind the state's Flood Warning System. In honoring Allan, the DEP Commissioner of the time described him as, "an example of what it means to be an environmentalist." At DEP Allan served in the Natural Resources Center, which later became the Environmental and Geographic Information Center and he founded the DEP Bookstore. Through the Bookstore Allan published award-winning books on natural history and environmental science, including the River Book by James MacBroom. In 1998 Allan was heralded by the Public Broadcasting System as one of the creators of the 1980 Earth Day "Something's Got to Give" Poster Campaign. Although the Campaign was intended as a onetime event, public demand propelled it into a 20-year international project illustrating the environmental impact of 20th Century consumption habits. Allan's passion for environmental causes grew to incorporate the inter-relatedness of issues directly affecting his community. He worked tirelessly as an individual citizen and as a member of various non-profit organizations addressing poverty, mass transit, recreational opportunities for inner city youth, and preservation of and access to our natural areas. Allan was one of the founding members of the Greater Hartford Sierra Club Inner City Outings (ICO)  an outreach and educational organization targeting inner city youth. Through ICO Allan expressed his greatest passion. Leading Hartford area children outdoors, "Woodie Allan," as the children came to call him, introduced them to the love of nature, the sweet taste of birch bark and the meaning of the adiabatic lapse rate. His exceptional ability to engage children through respect, humor and an irresistible enthusiasm for the outdoors produced a generation of nature lovers. Several became the youngest Sierra Club Certified Outings Leaders in the United States. In 2008 Allan received the prestigious Sierra Club Lifetime Environmental Service Award for his dedication to the environment and work with children. It was just one of many awards he received throughout his lifetime. Sensitive to the challenges of sustaining non-profit organizations, Allan returned to school at New York University in 2005 earning certification from the George H. Heyman, Jr. Center for Philanthropy and Fundraising. He founded CTGoodWorks.com, a philanthropic business through which he provided fundraising strategies and philanthropic advice to nonprofit organizations. Allan loved baseball, junk food and corny jokes. He extolled the beauty of the U.S. and hiked in all 50 states. He was passionate for trains. His last venture this past May, accompanied by his beloved nephew Noah, spanned the country from Hartford to San Francisco. Together they rode the Vermonter to Washington, DC, the Capitol Limited to Chicago and the famed California Zephyr to the West coast. Allan is predeceased by his father Harold S. Williams and sister Morissa Williams. He is survived by his mother Esther M. Williams of Waban, MA: brother and sister-in-law Robert and Laura Williams of Ludlow, VT; sister Rebecca Butler of Waban, MA; nieces and nephews Clarissa Butler, Matthew Nidek, Rachel Nidek, Steven Williams, Lynn Williams and Noah Brakel Williams; many cousins and a wide circle of remarkable friends. The Williams family is grateful to Masonicare Hospice and Allan's many friends for their selfless caregiving and support that could only be inspired by so generous a person as Allan. Interment is at Cedar Hill Cemetery in Hartford on Wednesday July 1st at 10:30 AM. Arrangements and scheduling are being coordinated by Weinstein Mortuary http://www.weinsteinmortuary.com/. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Masonicare Partners Home Health & Hospice, 111 Founders Plaza East Hartford, CT 06108; or The Railroad Museum of New England , PO Box 400, Thomaston, CT 06787-0400.

The funeral procession will form inside the entrance to Cedar Hill Cemetery at 10:15 AM and will proceed to the gravesite

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