Born: January 13, 1922
Hometown: Chappaqua, NY
Service: Merchant Marine
Position / Rank: Engine Cadet
Date/Place of death: September 19, 1943/New York, NY
Date / Place of burial: Unknown
Drew Allen, started his cadet training at Fort Schuyler and completed it at Kings Point.
According to Academy records, he was a member of Section 1-H-2 at the Academy, the
section that (with 1-H-1) formed the first class organization, began publishing the
Academy newspaper Polaris, and started the tradition of tossing coins at the feet of
Amphitrite, the “Goddess of Passing Grades”. Drew was nicknamed “Oilcan” while at
the Academy, due to his habit of carrying an oil can “whenever possible.”
As an Engine Cadet, Drew served aboard the SS Beta, a tanker, from September 15,
1941 to May 1, 1942. The Beta was operating along the U.S. East Coast and into the
Caribbean (West Indies) during this time. While he was aboard the SS Beta he
became ill with Myasthenia Gravis, a chronic autoimmune neuromuscular disorder.
Allen was first admitted to the Public Health Service Marine Hospital in Staten Island,
New York, but this hospital did not have adequate facilities to treat Allen’s disease, so
he was transferred to Bellevue Hospital in New York. Drew Allen died on September
19, 1943 at Bellevue Hospital in New York from his disease.
Although he is listed as a graduate, his U.S. Coast Guard record contains no indication
that he ever received his Third Assistant Engineer’s License. Therefore, he may have
graduated with his class in 1942, but was unable to meet the physical requirements to
receive his license.
For his merchant marine service Drew Allen earned the Merchant Marine Defense Bar,
the Atlantic War Zone Bar, the Victory Medal and Presidential Testimonial Letter.
Drew Allen was the oldest son and third of Herbert D. Allen and Evelyn H. Allen’s four
children. Drew’s older sisters were Sally and Deborah. According to the 1930 U.S.
Census, Herbert Allen was an executive at a tea and coffee company.