Police Officer and Dad Dies at 35 After Bee Sting Leads to Brain Injury: 'Please Watch Over Us,' Says Wife

Ryan Allen was stung by a bee in October 2021

Officer Ryan Allen
Photo: Hatboro County Police Department

Ryan Allen, a Pennsylvania police officer who suffered a rare reaction to a bee sting last year, has died, the Hatboro Police Department announced on Thursday. He was 35.

"Sadly, today Hatboro Police Officer Ryan Allen passed away surrounded by family and friends," Police Chief James Gardner wrote in a tribute to the father of two on Facebook.

"I will miss you until the end of my days, my sweet boy," his wife, Whitney Allen, wrote on Facebook. "Thank you for the most magical and happiest 10 years of my life."

"Thank you for our two beautiful boys," she added. "I will raise them to be men that you would be proud of. Please watch over us and send us signs that you're here with us. Until we meet again boo. I love you."

Allen, who joined the Hatboro force in 2013, was a member of the Montgomery County Drug Task Force and a canine handler who helped found the department's canine unit.

"Officer Allen was well known and loved in our community and was often seen in town with his canine partner, Louie," Gardner wrote in the post. "Officer Allen will be deeply missed by not only his family, but by his brothers and sisters in law enforcement and our community."

The news comes several months after a bee sting led to a brain injury and coma — a "horrific journey" Whitney has been candid about with supporters on a GoFundMe page.

After the sting in October 2021, doctors initially believed Allen would recover and return home — albeit with a need for 24-hour nursing care and a long recovery, according to the GoFundMe page.

However, doctors told the Allen family that he would not recover last month, Whitney explained in a March 8 update to her GoFundMe page.

"We have learned that Ryan's anoxic brain injury is even more devastating and extensive than we even first knew or could understand," she wrote. "Now that it has been several months since his cardiac arrest, the swelling in his brain has subsided and a recent MRI revealed shrinking of his brain and that crucial portions of his brain are no longer there. Ultimately, we have been told by his medical team there is no chance that he will recover in any meaningful way."

"Due to this more definitive picture of his prognosis, we have made the extremely painful decision as a family to have Ryan discharged from rehabilitation on hospice care to spend his remaining days surrounded by loved ones and friends in a peaceful setting close to our home," Whitney continued. "As you can imagine, this decision is heart breaking as we had so much hope that Ryan could recover. I know many of you have also shared that hope with us over the last months as well."

"As his family and the people that know and love him the most, we know from the bottom of our hearts that Ryan would not want to live in the current state he is in," she added. "We want to do what is best for Ryan and that is to give him his freedom and peace after so much trauma and pain."

Funeral arrangements will be announced by the Allen family at a later date, Gardner said.

The tragedy has been met with an outpouring of support from the Hatboro community, garnering more than $139,000 to date to help cover Allen's medical expenses.

"The support for Officer Allen, his family and our police department in the months since that October day has been overwhelming," Gardner wrote in his post.

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