Allen, Roderick Random, born 29-01-1894 in Marshall, Texas, as a son of Jefferson Buffington and Emma (Albers) Allen in Marshall, Texas, and spent his childhood in Palestine, Texas. He graduated from Texas A&M in 1915 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture. Roderic served in three wars. He was transferred to the Third Cavalry in June 1917, was promoted to Captain on 17-10-1917 and served with the regiment in France in the American Expeditionary Force. His troop and squadron were on remount duty at six locations. From November 1917 to January 1918 Allen was an aerial observer, First Observation Squadron, Aviation Section, Signal Corps, in World War I. During World War II he commanded various armoured units. He commanded the Twelfth Armoured Division, in Europe from September 1944 to August 1945. The 12th was nicknamed the “Hellcat Division” for its ferocious advance across Southern Germany. Individual Awards of the division: Medal of Honor 1, Distinguished Service Cross 2, Distinguished Service Medal 1, Silver Star 225, Legion of Merit 8, Distinguished Flying Cross 4, Soldier’s Medal 11, Bronze Star Medal-1.453 and Air Medals 63. After the war, Allen served as the commander of the 1st Armoured Division, nicknamed “Old Ironsides” in Italy with General, Commander 5th Army in Italy, Mark Clark and in Germany. The three colors of the division, red, yellow, and blue represent the Artillery, Cavalry, and Infantry Branches respectively, which are the colors of the three original combat arms which, when forged into one, created the field of Armor. This “pyramid of power” was devised by the order of then-Lieutenant Colonel.Georg Smith Patton. in Bourg, France in early 1918 during Patton’s formation and training of the Tank Corps in support of the American Expeditionary Force under General John J. Pershing
The division’s casualties during the European campaign included: KIA (killed in action): 1.194, WIA (wounded in action): 5.168, DOW (died of wounds): 234. Allen received the Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star Medal, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Army Command Ribbon, Distinguished Marksman award, Officer Legion of Honor award, Croix de Guerre with Palm (French), Order of the White Lion and Victory, and War Cross (Czechoslovakia). During the Korean War, he served as the Deputy Chief of Staff for the Far East Command and the commanding General of the XVI Corps.