“C Lloyd” Allen, son of C. Lloyd “Sugar” Allen and Mrs. Allen, entered Munro in January 1957, and such was his precociousness that he remains the only schoolboy who registered as a member of the old boy’s association while still in the fifth form. This was truly a sign of things to come, as he indeed became the quintessential old boy.
As a student, he plunged himself into the life of Munro College, and took part in most sports, with an emphasis on tennis. The others at which he did well were hockey, cricket, and rifle shooting. The academics, as such, did not receive priority attention, but his inherent penchant for facts and his curiosity and retention skills made him a walking encyclopedia, which he was always happy to demonstrate. His “marketplace knowledge” was later to serve him well in the commercial world.
He never went to the sixth form, but became a school prefect from as early as 5th form, and was a very effective one. Having been quite a mischievous prankster himself, he was adept at anticipating pranks and mischief and enforced good discipline.
Sales and Service
After school, his sharp dressing and smooth-talking made him a natural fit for sales and marketing, and his contribution to Munro from his perch in the corporate world has been tremendous. He became head of In sport, and through the Sports Development Commission, Munro had its two existing tennis courts resuscitated, and an additional court built. Along with other old boys – notably Laurie Sharp, Trevor Armstrong, Brando Hayden, and Dr Paul Auden – they were able to encourage and support the track and field team, bringing them to the level of constantly being in the first eight and on one occasion fifth at Boys Champs.
He was on the School Board of the 1990’s with Sharp as Chairman and was a key figure in a number of projects. One was the completion of the Richard B. Roper Auditorium in an effort that spanned 1992 to 2000 when it was opened by Sir Alistair McIntyre. Another was a massive building programme that provided the administration building, new labs and classrooms, and general improvement of existing buildings. A third was the windmill – the brainchild of Paul Stockhausen – but a project in which Allen proved to be indispensable both in construction and repair, utilizing his clout with the Wigton wind farm project.
Lloyd loved tennis, and in fact, continued playing to the very end. After excelling at the sport at Munro, he went on to represent Jamaica at the Brandon Trophy level, and was also later a non-playing captain for the Davis Cup team. When age eventually relegated him to play at the Masters level, he took his love of the sport into administration. He was president of the Jamaica Lawn Tennis Association for several years and did a lot for the recognition of the sport in Jamaica. In 1978, he was instrumental in bringing the WCT Challenge Cup, part of the World Championship Tennis Circuit, to Montego Bay Jamaica, where Ilie Nastase defeated Peter Fleming in the final.
Thankfully, he never did box at Munro, though he was a noted verbal pugilist, his contribution to actual boxing in Jamaica was just as legendary. He was twice president of the Jamaica Boxing Board of Control and a major critic of all presidents after him. The interest in boxing was influenced by colleague John Martinez while Allen worked at Desnoes & Geddes, and he was active in the promotion of Jamaica’s own Commonwealth lightweight champion, Bunny Grant, who was the first Jamaican boxer to fight for a world title on home soil.
In perhaps his greatest coup, he was also involved with promoter Lucien Chen in helping the Jamaican government outbid New York’s Madison Square Garden to host one-third of boxing’s most famous trilogy at the National Stadium. After the Thriller in Manila where Frazier defeated Ali, and before Ali’s legendary comeback in Zaire’s Rumble in the Jungle, Don King, Foreman, and Frazier were brought to Jamaica for the Sunshine Showdown in January 1973, where Foreman dramatically downed Frazier.
Lloyd was also active in politics as a member of the Jamaica Labour Party, but yet one of the best tributes read at his funeral was sent from the opposing side, from no less than former prime minister the Most Hon. P.J. Patterson, which said:
“C. Lloyd Allen was a man of firm convictions – never hesitant to express his views, even loudly at times. He could be contentious, but devoid of rancour. He will forever be remembered for his sharp mind and dashing style, his biting wit and infectious sense of humour. For Munro which he so dearly loved, he was prepared to give his all. For his country, he was always ready to devote his time and energy to the building of a strong and better Jamaica. The flame C. Lloyd worked to keep alight may flicker but must never die.”
Lloyd Allen died in 2014. Like the memories of his larger-than-life personality, his work will indeed live on.
For these reasons, Cecil Lloyd “C. Lloyd” Allen was proudly inducted into the Munro College Old Boys Association Hall of Fame.