Allen grew up in the little town of Beaufort, South Carolina. He grew up in a single-parent home with his mother who had him at the age of 17. Allen’s his father was a nonexistent in his life and he never got the opportunity to meet his father because his father went into the military and was never seen again.
Allen excelled in school and was in the top of his class in academics during his high school tenure. Allen was accepted into five colleges prior to his junior year of high school. His S.A.T. scores were well good compared to other local high school classmates. At the end of his junior year, he made the decision to choose between Texas Tech, North Carolina State University and University of Southern California to study Business Administration and Management. With the rising cost of education, Allen and his mother could not afford to pay for college. Allen decided to apply for scholarships at all the universities and was awarded a full scholarship to North Carolina State University. Allen chose to attend NC State for his freshman year. Allen excelled in his first semester by obtaining a 4.0 GPA and could apply for another scholarship, which increased his amount of scholarships and decreased his debt. During his spring semester, Allen met a young lady named Autumn. Allen and Autumn hit it off great and became friends, then started dating by the fall semester of their sophomore year.
The two were inseparable and they were seen on campus hugging, holding hands, and just being very affectionate with each other. The dating continued heavily for the next few years between the two. One day while Allen was in gym class one of his classmates noticed that he had some deep scratches on his arms and shoulders. His classmate was curious and asked what happened and Allen explained that his cat scratched him. That’s a hell of cat to do that and both jokingly playing it off and went on about their business. One of Allen’s friends Darryl noticed that Allen came to class with a split busted lip. “Somebody must have hit you with Mike Tyson left hook” Darryl shouted. Allen explained that he was playing basketball and he busted his lip playing pick-up basketball game at the local YMCA. As time goes on the Autumn and Allen were ready for graduation and walk across the stage to receive their degrees. Two days before graduation, Allen and Autumn were seen in the gym parking lot arguing after the graduation rehearsal walking to Allen’s car. The arguing continued in the car then, Autumn reached over and slapped Allen in the face. Allen remained in the car and grabbed his face in pain.
Most people will see the incident as just is as couple fighting over a disagreement, but nobody really picked up on the signs. Without any hesitation, Allen asked Autumn to be his wife after graduation and they were married a year later and Autumn hometown of Nashville, Tennessee. The couples were elated on their wedding day, smiling and shed tears of joy tears with everyone in attendance. The couple then moved to Indianapolis, Indiana to start their lives together. Autumn accepted a clinical psychologist job an Indianapolis, working with veterans while Allen found a job data analyst for a local company in Indianapolis. The couple were hours away from family, friends and decided to relocate to start their careers. Shortly after the couple moved into a two-bedroom townhouse, the neighbors around the couple of residence started hearing loud noises at night with people yelling for hours at a time. The incidents seemed to increase and the police were called to the residence of the couple one night. The police asked the if everyone was all right and to see if anyone one seemed to be hurt. The couple explained that they just had a disagreement which lead to an argument and the police did not see any signs of any abuse or anything like that.
On February 16, the police were called to the residence again for a domestic disturbance. This time the couple had bruises from fighting the couple. The couple was separated for the night and no one pressed charges. While Allen was at work, his wife would call him between four to five times a day just to check on him and make sure he was good. His wife also showed up at his office to surprise him with flowers, candy or a romantic gesture. Everyone in the office knew Allen’s wife and that she would come to see him and take him out to lunch. Allen was always the first one in the building every morning and often the last one to leave at night.
One day after lunch with his wife, Allen came back to the office and one of his coworkers Owen noticed that his mouth was bleeding when he came back into the office Andre bring a supportive friend asked Allen about mouth and what happened. Allen explained he must have bit his tongue after chewing some gum. Allen couldn’t stop the bleeding so he to grab some water to clear out the blood his mouth in the men’s bathroom. The guys joked and laughed the incident off.
The couple attended a gala celebration for those who has successfully completed the fiscal year in good standing and Allen was one of the recipients. As Allen receives his award, he stood next to some of the top directors in the company along with his supervisor for his performance. Allen walked gingerly off the platform back to his table. Allen held his head high and thank those in attendance and those who supported of him on as within his career.
The following Monday, Allen was absent from work and then one day transpired into two days being absent from work as a no call no-show. Finally, the third day Allen’s wife called his office and explained that Allen was in the hospital that his spleen and gall bladder had ruptured and he was suffering from internal bleeding along with a vile infection entering into his bloodstream.
Allen died on the fourth day due to complications of internal bleeding. His death was so sudden and so quick that his coworkers and family did not understand how he could have died from internal bleeding. An autopsy was done on Allen’s body and the results were shocking. Allen has suffered the internal bleeding from numerous blows to his stomach, chest, and back area along with other areas of his body over the years. After the autopsy findings were concluded the police found that Allen’s death was ruled a homicide. Allen’s wife denied all allegations that the couple had domestic abuse or physical abuse. At the end investigation, it was found that Allen suffered the abuse bruises from his wife. Allen left a legacy that touched others and always cared more about others more than he cared for himself.
As we celebrate the life of this young man, we must look inside at the bigger picture that’s been cast in the shadows. According to the CDC, one in four adult men in the U.S. will become a victim of domestic violence during his lifetime. That’s upwards of three million male domestic violence victims every year, or one man in America abused by an intimate or domestic partner every 37.8 seconds. Highlighting these statistics is not meant to downplay in any way domestic violence among women. It is, however, intended to add to the growing conversation that anyone can be the victim of domestic abuse and everyone who needs protection deserves access to it. (Huffington Post, 2015)
Men are also victims of domestic violence, but society often shapes men into shame and humiliation in admitting being abused. Many men were told and still are told that they shouldn’t speak about things that happen within their household. Allen suffered from depression and suffered from physical abuse from the age of seven until his death. Allen’s abuse started from his mother, who took the anger that she had for his father out on Allen. The abuse cycle continued and ended with Autumn.
I’ll leave you with this if you see the signs say something, sometimes we as men afraid to let stuff come to light and I’ll pride gets in the way. I asked you today, seek out help from a friend or a counselor nevertheless seek help. If you need a voice, I will be your voice to stand with you. We can cover up on the outside but eventually what’s inside will come out.
If you, or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, domestic abuse and this includes spousal cyber abuse – get help immediately. The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) has full details of what to do. National Domestic Violence Hotline on 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE).