James A. Allen, 76, died peacefully at his home surrounded by his family. James was born in Portland on Nov. 26, 1943, the son of RJ and Marion (Mealy) Allen.

He attended local schools and graduated from Portland High School in the class of 1962. He received his degree from Maine Centrail Institute in 1963, and attended New England Conservatory of Music as well as the University of Southern Maine, where he played in dance bands and was in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Boston.

James worked in many industries. He worked in the warehouse in Maine and New Hampshire for Hannaford Bros., was the top salesman for corn products company, and won top sales awards as an insurance agent. In 1974 he moved back to South Portland where he worked for the Maine Central Railroad Company.

When the railroad company was sold, he changed careers and became a real estate agent for Harnden Realty. In his free time, he took classes at Southern Maine Community College in cooking, which led to his next career adventure as a cook on TECO shipping ships. He was able to travel the world with this new career into his 60s.

James was very active in politics. He was the head of the Democratic City Committee where he worked with John Brennan and George Mitchell, and organized a caucus for vice president of Mondale. He also served for three years on the board of visitors for the Maine Maritime Academy. James loved fishing, hunting and Pittsburgh sporting events.

He is survived by his wife, Carol Allen; sons, Benjamin Allen and his wife, Jamie; Jeffrey Allen and his wife, Melissa, of Pittsburgh; twin grandchildren, Bradley and Brooke; sister, Marilyn; brother, Corey; brother in laws, Dan Flynn and his wife Vicki, Tim Flynn, John Shaw and his wife Eileen; sister in law, Terri Flynn and several nieces and nephews.

Services will be private. Arrangements are under the direction of the Conroy-Tully Walker Funeral Home of South Portland. To view James’ memorial page, or to share an online condolence, visit www.ConroyTullyWalker.com.