General John Allen’s daughter, Bobbie Allen, a 26-year-old singer and songwriter, joined her mother Kathy to support her father at the committee in March.
But while they appeared the picture of unity, the family has been thrown into the midst of a scandal, after General John Allen was found to have sent thousands of “inappropriate” emails to military socialite Jill Kelley.
John Allen is now under investigation by the FBI for his communication with Jill Kelley, a housewife and volunteer who organizes social events for military families in the Tampa area.
His daughter, Bobbie Allen, has revealed how her military upbringing shaped her, and has told how she was inspired to sing by her mother Kathy, who would always sing in the house.
Now living in Washington DC, Bobbie Allen, who has a sister called Betty, revealed that music helped her during a transient childhood.
Bobbie Allen called Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, North Carolina, home twice while growing up – and even performed there last year.
According to Bobbie Allen, her mother carried their stereo system by hand to every new duty station they moved to and it was the first thing they set up in their new homes, saying: “That’s when life could begin.
“If we’d had a bad day at school, she would put on happy music and make us dance. Music was the fifth member of our family.”
Writing on her blog, Bobbie Allen said she was inspired by Karen Carpenter, calling her voice “liberating and inspiring”.
She said she always kept her tape deck playing, and sang to herself in the backseat of the car as the family moved around.
But despite her lifelong love of singing, Bobbie Allen had never seriously considered a music career until after graduating college from Virginia Tech with an English degree.
She said: “I realized that life isn’t about waiting around for things to happen to you.
“I know it sounds cliché but I have never felt more comfortable than with a guitar in my hands and singing.”
Bobbie Allen released her debut album, Ready or Not, in June 2011 and it is available on iTunes and Amazon.com.
But while she has great hopes for a future in the spotlight, now Bobbie Allen is getting the sort of attention she cannot have hoped for.
Her father, General John R. Allen, commander of U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan, is under investigation by the FBI after the agency discovered between 20,000 and 30,000 pages of communication between him and 37-year-old housewife Jill Kelley.
Jill Kelley entered the public eye when she was the target of threatening emails from General David Petraeus’ mistress, Paula Broadwell, which the FBI used to uncover the affair, leading to his resignation.
John Allen was due to take over as NATO’s top commander, but his appointment has been suspended while his relationship with Jill Kelley is investigated.