Alan F. Ellis spent his last days with a smile, surrounded by family, laughter, good food, and classical music. He lived each day to the fullest.

He was born in New Castle, PA on June 21, 1936. He was the son of the late G. Ross and Esther (Fell) Ellis of New Wilmington, PA. Alan was mechanically talented from a young age and  worked summers with the local construction company, where he eventually became an apprentice finish carpenter. He made use of his technical skills during his undergraduate years at Westminster College, serving as Assistant to the Technical Director of the college theater.

His work backstage also introduced him to speech major, Elizabeth M. (McGill) Ellis, who became his wife of 64 years. After graduating, Alan continued his education at the University of Illinois, with a PhD in Chemistry, and later an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh. He was a research chemist, working for Gulf and Chevron Chemical Companies.

Alan brought his talent for solving problems into every area of his life. Over the years he did extensive remodeling to every house he and his family called home, as well as helping with building and renovation projects at three different churches. His pride and joy were the many handmade cabinets he built for his own home and the homes of his children. Alan and his wife also continued to pursue their love of theater throughout their lives, getting involved in amateur theater groups, leading a drama ministry at their church, and assisting their daughter in directing and producing high school plays.

His technical talent showed up in the kitchen as well, where he spent many happy hours perfecting recipes (using spreadsheets, as any research chemist would). He and his wife delighted in sharing their love of good food, sharing their culinary skills by hosting family gatherings, church retreats, and visiting missionaries.

After retiring from Chevron, Alan moved to Barto, Pa. where he volunteered for the American Red Cross of the Lehigh Valley. In recognition of his many years of service in leadership positions, he received the Clara Barton Award for Meritorious Volunteer Leadership.

Although he was a quiet man who preferred to work behind the scenes, he had a dry sense of humor, often surprising listeners with his one-line zingers and clever puns. He shared his father’s quirk of conducting while listening to classical music, a trait his passed on to his children. (In his last hours, his hand was still gently conducting as he listened to Bach and Handel.) Other lifelong hobbies included hiking, nature photography, exploring local food purveyors, and cheering his children and grandchildren from the sidelines. His life could be summed up by the text on one of his favorite T-shirts: Stay calm and Grandpa will fix it.

Surviving in addition to his wife are three daughters, Lisa Betz of Morgantown, PA, Jodi Ellis of Dillon, CO, and Megan Frazier of Kingwood, TX, a brother, George Ellis of Bloomington, IN, and two sisters, Mary Ann Bridenbaugh of Healdsburg, CA and Elizabeth Hines of New Wilmington, PA. There are four grandchildren.

A private graveside service will be held at the convenience of the family at the Salem Bible Church Cemetery in Macungie.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in the memory of Alan to the American Red Cross, PA Rivers Chapter, 3939 Broadway, Allentown, Pa. 18104

Arrangements by The Labs Funeral Home, Inc. of Honey Brook, Pa.

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We knew Al and Beth at Kingwood Community Church in Kingwood, TX, where they headed up a drama ministry, planned meals and cooked on church retreats, Al did fix-up projects around the church, and demonstrated hospitality by inviting others, including us, to their home for delicious meals. They were lovingly involved in their daughters' lives even after the girls left home. Al was a gentleman, a kind-hearted person, an intelligent leader and problem solver, a creative person, and a faithful husband, father, and Christ follower. He will be greatly missed. We are praying for peace and comfort for his family.

~ John and Susie Sellner Kingwood, TX
3/24/2021 9:05:37 PM

I will forever be grateful for the impact Dad Ellis has had on my life. He and Mom Ellis enfolded me into their family when I was a teenager and were instrumental in guiding me towards a saving faith in Jesus Christ. I learned many things about carpentry, music, literature, history, cooking, marriage, parenting, and life from time spent in the Ellis household. He will be deeply missed until the moment I see him again.

~ Sheila Isham Oldsmar , Fl
3/24/2021 8:53:34 PM

I knew Al when I worked for Chevron Chemical at both the Orange, TX and Cedar Bayou (Baytown, TX) plants. He was a top notch manager for his technical, leadership, and people skills. He was the senior manager when a group of ten of us travelled to the BP plant in Lavera France for a technology exchange. Al made sure we had a day in Paris on the way home after five full days of meetings. I think of Al every time I see a picture of the Eiffel Tower because he led us there. Rest in peace.

~ Larry Montano Humble,
3/24/2021 3:59:56 PM

I first met Al when I was assigned to the TRC project in 1982 and worked with him at Cedar Bayou, Kingwood and Harmerville on TRC. He was a warm, supportive boss who backed his people. He proved his culinary skills by producing a palatable "Mystery Meat" from unknown species which was served to the skeleton crew that patrolled Cedar Bayou when the bombs were placed in the plant in September 1982. We will miss his insights and wit. Thanks for everything Al.

~ David Horwath
3/22/2021 9:56:21 PM

When we moved to Kingwood in the 90s, Al was welcoming and shared insights on the community. He was hard-working and a pleasure to work with. Intelligent, insightful, humorous and always helpful he will be truly missed.

~ Paul Spindler
3/22/2021 1:08:30 PM

I am so sorry to hear of the homegoing of Dr. Ellis. He was a good man and a good boss when I worked for him as an Administrative Assistant on the TRC Project at the Chevron Cedar Bayou Plant in Baytown, Texas. There are many fond memories from his tenure there, including the time he had all those on the project over for dinner. We all helped prepare and cook our meal and were there for five hours. But it was fun and certainly different, so I was well aware of his culinary skills. He is also remembered as a family man; he loved his wife and daughters so much. Rest in peace, Dr. Ellis. Prayers for his wife and family; God bless you all.

~ Connie Lattoz Baytown, TX
3/22/2021 12:27:39 AM

We have lost a gentleman, a hard worker and friend. Our condolences to all of the family from the Smiths in Houston.

~ Walter and Sharon Smith
3/21/2021 9:36:24 PM

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