Allen Lee Forbes

Named “Outstanding Young Man of America” in 1989, Allen Lee Forbes, 39, died of AIDS Thursday, March 16, 1995, at home.

Allen graduated from Washington School for the Deaf in 1976 and received an Associates Degree in Early Childhood Development from Seattle Community College in 1978.  Allen was the president of Northwest Rainbow Alliance of the Deaf for four years, president of Fort Vancouver Association of the Deaf, and an advisory board member of the Department of Social and Health Services.  He was also the vice president of DeafGLOW, a founder of Southwest Washington Center of the Deaf, and he served on the HIV/AIDS Advisory Board.

Born November 5, 1955, in Bellingham, Washington, Allen lived in Vancouver and had been a resident of Clark County for 35 years.  He was a lead processor and auditor at Tektronix for 16 years.

Allen was preceded in death by his father, L. Rex Forbes in 1981.  He is survived by his mother, Better Lillian Forbes of Bellingham, Washington, his brother and sister-in-law William and Barbara of Seattle, Washington, one nephew, two nieces, two grand-nieces, numerous aunts, uncles, cousins and friends, a beloved pet, Samantha and his special companion and partner of ten years, Rick Spencer.

(Obituary forwarded by Curtis Peart, WSDAA Historian)

One Response to “Allen Lee Forbes”

  1. lefort_1 Says:

    I met Allen in 1979, while working at Tektronix. As the ‘new kid’, I was given 90 days to learn enough ASL so I could communicate with him. He was very gracious in his evaluation of my abilities.

    I remember Allen as full of fun and laughter, a mischievous young man with a heart of gold.

    I left Tektronix in 1981, and due to my lack of a TTY, I lost track of Allen. After a full career in electronics, I applied to dental school at OHSU and was accepted in 1997. It was during that time I learned of Allen’s passing. In memory of Allen, I applied for a faculty position to work in the OHSU Russell Street Clinic and was accepted. I dedicated my 3 years there to my memory of Allen, in the hopes that his spirit would find happiness in the service we provided there to the HIV community. Fully 70% of my patients were HIV positive, and each and every one were greeted with the warmth and friendship that I wish I could have continued to share with Allen.

    The lessons Allen taught me remain alive to this very day:

    Treat every day as a gift and a pleasure.
    Treat every human as a gift and a friend.
    Treat every emotion your friends express with respect, joy, support and kindness.
    Treat everyone you meet as if they are your best friend.

    I miss my friend Allen.
    I wish I could have been there for him.

    Randall C Jones, DMD
    Independence, OR

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