Doggedly loyal to the struggle for socialism and a member of five different socialist organisations over his life, Allan Little departed our ranks in Brisbane on 12 July at the age of 81.
A person of incredibly modest means, he began his working life as a cane cutter in Queensland’s north and finished as a unionist and manufacturing worker in the Brisbane suburb of Rocklea.
Ferociously independent and always reluctant to burden anyone with personal requests – even when bed bound – Allan rarely talked about his life’s experiences.
Instead he maintained his gaze on current debates, surrounding himself with a vast print library and happily committing to every possible political activity his revolutionary party was involved in.
Allan would never miss a forum, rally or Saturday campaign spot to sell the revolutionary press, only slowing down in the last two months before his passing.
Ask any Brisbane radical and they will instantly remember Allan as the aged revolutionary with a red bag slung over his shoulder, paper and leaflets at the ready, at most political events. Even when he was too weak to actually join a march, he still attended to help in whatever capacity possible.
Allan first joined the revolutionary movement via the Communist Party, as a member of which he made his one and only overseas trip, to attend the Moscow-based International Party School in the early 1980s.
When the CPA split, he joined the pro-Moscow Socialist Party of Australia and later the Democratic Socialist Party in Brisbane. He was a founding member of the Revolutionary Socialist Party in 2008. He was also a founding member of Revolutionary Action which formed earlier this year. Allan was well-cared for and supported by members of RA as his ailing health caught-up with him.
While never a central leader of any of these organisations, he was a proud and active member of all. Allan was extremely well read, particularly in the areas of Marxist economics and socialist solutions to food and environmental problems. He always had an eye on the financial pages and relished debating the economic situation with comrades or people in the street.
Late in life he adopted an extremely spartan existence, choosing to live in a simple home and continuing to keep his book collection well stocked and regularly offering titles to comrades.
But despite the problems of old age, he remained absolutely loyal to any collective activity and the class struggle. It is very rare indeed that a comrade remains highly active in the often tedious, lifelong struggle for socialism, but Allan never wavered from the discipline or commitment required.
Vale comrade Allan Little, you were true to your class by maintaining your struggle to the very end. You will be missed, comrade.
[This is an updated version of an earlier obituary that contained some omissions and errors. Our apologies to any friends or comrades who may have been upset with the original, and our thanks for bringing the shortcomings to light]