There might not be a single best way to remember a distinguished reporter that covered the Bills the way Allen Wilson did for the Buffalo News on the heels of his untimely passing Saturday at age 49. That's largely because Wilson was an even better human being. The Bills family did their level best to pay their respects and honor the dedicated reporter that wrote for more than a decade about the Bills with balance and fairness.
Prior to the kickoff of Sunday's game against Tennessee the Bills had a moment of silence in the press box for Allen Wilson, which was preceded by a statement by Bills Vice President of Communication Scott Berchtold.
"Some of us in the press box today referred to Allen as an excellent sports reporter. Some referred to him as "colleague" and some referred to him as "co-worker"…but we ALL referred to Big Al as "friend" and that's what makes today so tough," said Berchtold. "(Buffalo News columnist Jerry Sullivan) Sully, you probably said it best in your column this morning when you wrote that Allen made the world a better place. We will all miss him dearly. On behalf of Ralph Wilson and the entire Buffalo Bills organization, we want to offer our deepest sympathies to Allen's wife Lisa, his daughter Alissa and all of Al's family and friends."
Bills CEO Russ Brandon expressed the club's sympathies on twitter Sunday morning issuing the following tweets.
*Our thoughts & prayers go out to Allen Wilson's family especially his wife Lisa & daughter Alissa. Buffalo lost a tremendous man. *
Football season is not the same without Allen Wilson covering the beat. He will be missed by our entire organization.
*Scott Berchtold & our media relations staff will honor Allen's life today with flowers, a framed photo & name card at his press box seat. *
Our condolences go out to the Buffalo News staff & all who knew Allen. We will all be with heavy hearts on this game day. **
Buffalo's locker room was also deeply affected by Allen Wilson's passing. Team co-captain George Wilson issued a statement on behalf of the players that respected the veteran reporter.
*"I would like to extend our thoughts and prayers to his wife Lisa and daughter Alissa and the rest of Allen Wilson's family. Our hearts go out to them. Allen was such a great joy to work with and be around. Even when he was not writing a story about you he would come by your locker and ask how you were doing. He was a very genuine guy and very supportive of me and my time in Buffalo. He was always uplifting and encouraging in my journey in this league and with this team as he was with many players over the years. *
So on behalf of the guys in our locker room, his presence will certainly be missed. Allen was an all-around great guy. The Buffalo News not only lost a good writer but they lost a good man. Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with his family at this time."
Allen Wilson passed on Dec. 3rd after a courageous battle with leukemia. As a colleague and friend of Wilson's I would only like to add my personal condolences to his wife Lisa and darling daughter Alissa. He was a respected reporter, but we all know he was a beloved husband and father. Thoughts and prayers for the Wilson family at this difficult time of loss. Rest in peace Big Al.