Dr. Allen Forest Crooms was the oldest child of Dorothy and Gabriel Crooms. He was reared in Newark, NJ, attended Peshine Avenue Elementary School and West Side High School. He played varsity football his senior year and was awarded a football scholarship to Shaw University in Raleigh, NC. As a youth he attended Bethany Baptist Church in East Orange, NJ. He was taught to be kind to others, work hard and love God, which he did very well.

Allen decided to become a dentist when a local black dentist shared his experience and explained ways to get the education required to become a dentist. Al always received good grades and graduated at the top of his class.
Whenever Allen could he would share his experience with young people so they would know there is more than one way to reach your goals.

Allen attended Shaw University, with the support of his family and a football scholarship. 'Big Cid' credits his early success at preparing for his goals by listening to those adults who suggested that he complete certain tasks even when he was unsure about the success of the suggestions. He believed that these 'angels' were placed in his life by God and were integral to his future successes.

Allen met the love of his life Geraldine Turner of Raleigh, NC, courted her and married her before matriculating at Meharry Medical School. He joined the ROTC Air Force to supplement his income while in dental school. He attended Shaw from 1946 through 1950. He played football at Shaw for 3 1/5 years until 1949. After graduating from Shaw, Allen took a teaching position at Baden High School in Baden, NC for one year. That same year, he took the Dental Aptitude Test at Chapel Hill University of Medicine & Dentistry; passed, and was accepted at Meharry Medical College, School of Dentistry in Nashville, TN.

Allen graduated from Meharry Medical College, with a D.D.S degree in September 1955. He was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Air Force 817th Medical Group and served 11 years, having been stationed in Wichita, KS, Great Britain, and Portsmouth, NH.
Dr. Crooms separated from the US Air Force in 1963 with the rank of Captain and began his private practice in Newark, NJ. The family settled in Newark where Al and Geri reared their children. While in Newark, he was appointed to the UMDNJ Dental School where he taught for five years.

'Doc' served his church, Trinity United Methodist Church and professional associations faithfully. Just as he was helped in his youth he willingly gave a hand to those around him. He loved working in the yard planting flowers. Al was a people person, the life of the party and was loved by those who knew him.

Allen and Geraldine decided to move to Raleigh, NC to live their retirement years in the Turner family home. They enthusiastically participated in the ministries and activities at Wilson Temple United Methodist Church and Shaw University. Al loved to sing in the choir and was an inspiration to his church family.

Big Al was the product of the suggestions, directions and experiences of his childhood. William Wordsworth's line "the child is father of the man', from his poem "My Heart Leaps Up" meant that man is the product of his habits and behavior developed in childhood. Al's last days were spent praising God in song, sharing his life stories with those who loved him and loving us all.

Allen Crooms has joined his soul mate, Geraldine and leaves to mourn him Cheryl Crooms Williams (Bernard and family), Allison Phillips and Allen Crooms, Jr., (Dannette and family); his grandchildren, Bryce and Brooke Snell, Lauren and Allison Phillips, Turner and Alynn Crooms; his brothers, William Crooms (Elba), John Crooms (Glorious), Elliot Crooms and Michael Crooms (Denise) and a host of couisins, nieces, nephews and friends.

Funeral service at 11:00 AM Thursday, December 7, 2017 at Wilson Temple United Methodist Church, 1021 Oberlin Road, Raleigh, NC, preceded by a 10:00 AM visitation.