Allen Richard Speed, 90, passed away peacefully on Friday, May 10, at St. John’s United in Billings. He was surrounded by his family.
Allen was born in 1928 in Scobey and was raised in Billings by his parents, Florence and Richard Speed, along with his older sister, Rosemary. He graduated from Billings Senior High School before joining the U.S. Navy as a Seaman Apprentice. He was honorably discharged on Aug. 21, 1950, and the very next day joined the U.S. Air Force. He was honorably discharged on Aug. 21, 1954, having achieved the rank of Airman First Class.
Meeting Gloria Greenfield was love at first sight. Six months later, the two married and spent 62 years as devoted partners. Allen and Gloria had three children — Stacey, Richard and Kimberly — and raised them in Billings. He was the owner-manager of KB Chemical Co., which he’d taken over from his father and passed on to his daughter Stacey. Allen’s grandson now works there as well.
Allen and Gloria loved to travel, and visited many different countries throughout their marriage. They spent most winters in Rancho Mirage, California, and most summer weekends at East Rosebud Lake in the cabin Allen helped build — and then rebuild. The pair eventually retired to their home in Red Lodge, where Allen enjoyed coffee with his friends every morning, up until his last days.
Allen was always quick with a joke and had a great sense of humor, a trait he kept up until the very end. He loved to fly-fish and play golf, and was a great cook, although it was often some type of fish. Allen was a 50-year Master Mason, a member of the Hilands Golf Club in Billings, past president of Pioneer Kiwanis, a lifetime member of Elks Lodge #394, and a member of the Rotary of Red Lodge.
Allen is preceded in death by his parents; his sister, Rosemary; and his first granddaughter, Story Braaten. He is survived by his wife, Gloria; his three children, Stacey (Jeffrey) Wagner, Richard Speed, and Kimberly (Hugh) Hays; and his two grandchildren, Asher Braaten and Brenna (Cody) Brockel.
The family would like to thank Chris Bertilino, and the staff and volunteers at the Willows and Beartooth Hospital in Red Lodge and Hansen Cottage and St. John’s United in Billings.
A celebration of life will be held this summer at his beloved East Rosebud Lake.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: the Alzheimer’s Association, the Parkinson’s Foundation or a charity of your choice.