Ernest D. “Cotton” Allen, 80, passed away on July 12, 2014, at Mercy Hospital in Ardmore. Services will be Tuesday, July 15, 2014, at 2 p.m. at Craddock Funeral Home. Burial will follow at Mt. Olive Cemetery, Healdton, accompanied by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol Honor Guard.
Cotton was born Oct. 9, 1933, in Healdton, to Orville J. and Bessie Sims Allen. He was a star athlete in football, basketball and track for the Healdton Bulldogs. He graduated and married his high school sweetheart, Virginia Doss.  He worked for Magnolia Oil in Oklahoma and Texas, and obtained his associate degree from Gainesville Junior College.
In 1960, he decided to become an Oklahoma Highway Patrolman. He proudly patrolled in Midwest City, Purcell, Pauls Valley, Lawton and Ardmore, all the while advancing his rank. He retired as Chief of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol with almost 30 years of service.
Cotton and Virginia then had time to enjoy their home, friends and church at Enos. Family gatherings, gardening and coffee on the porch made their time at Lake Texoma special. An avid golfer, hunter and fisherman, Cotton’s sense of humor always made any outing unforgettable. To his children, he gave the surety of a father’s love and protection.
He is survived by his children, Valerie and Mike Bynum, Jesse and Kim Allen, Johnny and Debbie Allen, and Vickie and Dillon Page; grandchildren Amy and Joel Wisian, Allen and Emily Bynum, Casey and Brooke Miller, Brook Snodgrass Gandy, Matt and Emily Miller, Jamie and Andrew Chavers, Brandon Allen, Jessica Allen, Julie Allen, and Madison Jean, Mekenzi and Brad Love; six great-grandchildren, Wyatt Wisian, Macy Mae Wisian, Carson Miller, Trey Snodgrass, Addison Chavers, Bennett Love and soon-to-be-born Harper Jane Miller and Lilah Grace Miller. He is also survived by two cherished nieces, Debbie Holmes and Susie Weaver and their families; cousins Karen Barbour, Donna McNeil, Nancy Bingman, Margaret Casey, Sue Day and their families; an uncle, Chester Sims; and a caring friend, Linda Price.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Virginia, grandson Derrek Snodgrass, brother Kenneth Allen, half-brother J.F. Chaney and his parents.
Grandsons Matthew Miller, Casey Miller, Brandon Allen, Allen Bynum, Joel Wisian, Andrew Chavers and Brad Love will serve as honorary pallbearers.
In recognition of the loving care and friendship provided by the staff and residents of the Ardmore Veterans Center, memorials may be made to the Ardmore Veterans Center Recreation Fund, P.O. Box 489, Ardmore 73402.
Online condolences can be made at