March 4, 1936 – October 6, 2018
Crystal McRae Allen of Atlanta, Georgia, passed away peacefully on Saturday, October 6, 2018, after extended treatment for leukemia. She displayed a graceful and grateful attitude and demeanor in the year since her diagnosis, and had faith in an afterlife with her maker.
Crystal was born in Cuthbert, Georgia on March 4, 1936, to William and Evelyn McRae. She grew up in Fort Gaines, Georgia, graduated from LaGrange High School and earned an English degree with Phi Beta Kappa distinction from Florida State University where she was a member of the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority. After graduation, Crystal moved to Atlanta to work in Public Relations at Emory University. She met a practicing attorney, Henry Milton Quillian, Jr., at Glenn Memorial Methodist Church and married him on October 19, 1957. Crystal and Henry enjoyed a wonderful 14-year marriage and welcomed 3 children into their family before Henry died of cancer in 1972.
Crystal later married Harris Montgomery “Money” Allen and welcomed his 3 children into her life. Crystal and Money were happily married for 38 years until he passed away in 2011. Crystal was always an active volunteer and served for many years on the board of Families First. Additionally, she was an active member and on the Administrative Board of Northside United Methodist Church, and later, very active at Trinity Presbyterian Church. Throughout her life, she honed her beliefs in the way Christ would have her live by reading the Bible and studying hundreds of theology books. She met regularly with a group of friends known as “The Theology Group” for over 40 years.
Crystal traveled extensively over the course of her lifetime, including in recent years. She also timely devoured each publication of Time Magazine, The Economist and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Consequently, she was poised to cogently discuss virtually any topic, and often challenged her family with probing questions and comments.
As the family Matriarch, a happy and unified family was of paramount importance to Crystal –and this was achieved by her leadership. She made a great point of staying close to all of her relatives and leaves many close friends as well.
She is survived by 6 children: daughter Crystal Quillian Coffey and her husband Brian; son Henry Milton Quillian III and his wife Celia “Deanie”; son David Wolcott Quillian and his wife Christine; son Harris M. Allen, Jr.; son William H. Allen; and daughter, Gene Allen Miller and her husband Dave. She also leaves 14 grandchildren including Celia and Henry M. Quillian IV; Kim and Andrew Coffey; Catherine, Margaret and Elizabeth Quillian; Katherine and Peter Allen; Gene Marie Allen Lipsey and Paige Allen; and Harrison, David and Gene Miller. Other close family members include her in-laws Dr. and Mrs. Harrison Reeves, Mr. and Mrs. George Quillian, and her cousins Emory, Charles and Thomas Lewis; and Mr. James Smith; as well as many close friends and family members.
A Celebration of Life service will be held on Saturday October 20, 2018 at 2 PM at Trinity Presbyterian Church on Howell Mill Road in Atlanta, GA. All are invited to attend.
Finally, three charities were particularly dear to Crystal’s heart. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Crystal’s memory to: Families First of Atlanta located at 80 Joseph E. Lowery Blvd., Atlanta, GA 30314, Trinity Presbyterian Church located at 3003 Howell Mill Rd., Atlanta, GA 30327 or the Agape Community Center of Atlanta located at 2210 Marietta Blvd., Atlanta, GA 30318.