John Raymond Allum, 70, died May 26, 2008, in Pratt at the age of 70. He was born Feb. 20, 1938, in New York, Ill.

John Raymond Allum, 70, died May 26, 2008, in Pratt at the age of 70. He was born Feb. 20, 1938, in New York, Ill.
A private home memorial was held. Ayres-Calbeck Mortuary was in charge of arrangements.
Notable: Something of Dad’s we wish to share with Kansas…

The Sierra Nevada Mountains (in the 1950s)
By John Raymond Allum (February 20, 1938 – May 26, 2008)

Yes! Retirement is good! As I sit on my porch several times a day smoking 40 cent cigars, I reminisce. I think about flying airplanes. I haven’t done that for quite a while. I think about camping and hunting. I haven’t done that for quite a while either. But I do travel to the Sierra Nevada Mountains once or twice a year and walk through the forest and reminisce. People today may think: “Here is just another old man; an archaic dinosaur; an over the hill, out of commission, caput (old man)” But what an adventurous life I’ve had! And it’s not over yet!
Have you ever heard of “Brushy Springs?” No, of course not! It’s so far back in the Sierra Nevada Boone Docks that only a handful of people ever go there. Well, I lived there for four summers while working in the U.S. Forest Service. The main population was composed of bear, rattlesnake and deer, one or two US foresters and about 20 logging road construction workers. We had a dirt runway where sometimes I was flown in or out of the outpost in a small single engine airplane (and) there was a well kept Forestry Guard Station that was our summer home.
Have you ever wanted a job where you would only see your boss about once every two weeks? Well, that is how it was for me in Brushy Springs. My assignments were: fire fighter, tank truck operator, patrolman and foreman. We hardly ever had a fire to fight. We mainly bounced along the old dirt roads day by day, in a four wheel drive forestry truck. We visited campers, fishermen, hunters, gold miners and cattlemen in the surrounding 200 square mile area assigned to us.
At that time, the loggers hadn’t had the time yet to log the beautiful rich green deep virgin forests. The territory was still in its natural state. The largest tree in our area was an 8 foot diameter sugar pine standing at the edge of the lush green McCulloch Meadows. Late mornings were the most beautiful time of day when the sun rays would shine down at an angle through the mist between the trees; it was always a pleasant surprise when various kinds of wildlife would appear.
In those mountainous areas and in those times, the people had high senses of responsibility. Little regulation was required. Our occasional meetings here and there and along the road were very much on friendly terms. We helped one another. We looked forward to a chat the next time we would chance to meet. Everyone carried a gun; no one got shot!
Today, the good news is that the Sierra Nevada Mountains have not changed a lot. They are still green; still beautiful, and still peaceful. I strongly recommend a summer vacation there for you!
So, here I am on my porch. Once again, having a late evening 40 cent cigar; thankful for retirement, thankful for an adventurous life and looking forward to some new adventure.

The above is a short story Dad wrote down, in his own hand, in December of 1997. It is telling of what he valued most in life and in people he surrounded himself with. His adventures often kept him from his family but we all know he had us close to his heart. He will be sadly missed by all of us…
For about 10 years now, Dad made Pratt, his home. The Midwest and your way of life and your genuine respect and mutual support of each other was a place of great peace for him. There are many here we will never have the chance to meet but we wish to say thank you to all of you for keeping Dad safe and in such good company.
We are not a family of great means but have always wanted to make some positive contribution (as was his heart, my dad always thought large).
No formal services will be held but we do request, in lieu of flowers or gifts that donations be made in our dad’s name, at the South Wind Hospice Home, PO Box 862, Pratt, KS 67124.
Edward Allum (son)
With love from the rest of our family whose lives he also touched, Lauren Ashley Draper (deceased), Winifred Rose McCray, Lisa Marie Allum and Ronald Wayne Jirschefske