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Friends share memories of man who died in Waukegan chemical explosion

Posted at 9:43 AM, May 06, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-06 18:33:08-04

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WAUKEGAN -- Sunday afternoon, Illinois authorities said they located a third victim who was missing after a massive explosion at a chemical plant in suburban Waukegan Friday night. A fourth victim is still reported missing and presumed dead.

One of those identified is 29-year-old Allen Stevens of Paddock Lake in Kenosha County.

Jerry Kevek is still processing the news about his friend. Stevens was a man he first met at a golf outing about seven years ago.

“If you met Allen you loved him. I don’t know anybody that didn’t like the guy,” Kevek said. “He was just a very social, people person, just relatable to everybody and do anything for anyone.”

Friday night Stevens was working at AB Specialty Silicones, when an explosion lit up the sky, even shaking the ground miles away in his home of Kenosha County.

Stevens was taken to the hospital but later died of his injuries. He was just 29-years-old.

Kevek said Stevens loved taking out his Harley, and not a day went by where he didn’t have something going on.

“Aside from his job there, he helped out another friend with seal-coating and stuff. He was just always busy,” he said.

No matter what it was, you could count on Stevens for a good old laugh.

“He always had a smile on his face, hard worker, loved his wife, loved his friends, loved just life,” Kevek said.

They'll remember Stevens as the man with the big grin, who cared deeply for his family and friends.

“He’s going to be sorely missed by a lot of people, loved by a lot of people, and my heart goes out to all the other families that were involved in the accident,” Kevek said.

More than $17,000 has already been raised on a GoFundMe page to help Stevens' family with funeral costs.