Robert W. Collins, Sr.

Born: Thu., Jan. 13, 1921
Died: Thu., Mar. 29, 2012

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Robert W. Collins, Sr. Pendleton attorney, Robert Bob Winfield Collins, Sr., died on Thursday, March 29, 2012, at Juniper House in Pendleton. Robert was born in Greenup, Kentucky on January 13, 1921, to James Collins and Sarah Worthington Collins, the fifth of six children. His early life was spent on a small family farm in the hills of eastern Kentucky where he developed his lifelong love of the outdoors, hunting, fishing and farming. After high school, Robert felt the call of the wild and hopped a train to "the West," landing in Idaho with his brother Bill. He then enlisted in the Army Air Corps, several years before the attack on Pearl Harbor, where he was trained as a flight mechanic, gunner, and crew chief. He was on active duty when the United States entered World War II in 1941. He rose to the rank of Master Sergeant. He was stationed during the war throughout the South Pacific, including Australia, New Guinea, Burma, Java and India, where he "flew the hump" on supply missions to China. He served in one of the few B-17 units in the Pacific theater, and flew on numerous missions under fire as a gunner and crew chief. After the war, Robert returned to Kentucky and enrolled at Ashland Junior College, where he met his future wife, Ruth Mae Brooks. They married on September 14, 1946. Robert went on to Centre College of Kentucky and earned his law degree at Vanderbilt Law School in Nashville, Tennessee. Robert convinced Ruth that Oregon was their next stop and they moved to Salem, Oregon in 1951 where their first child, Robert W. Collins, Jr., was born. Bob and Ruth moved to Pendleton in 1951, where their other three children, Michael, Kimberlee, and John, were born. Bob soon joined the Pendleton law firm of Raley, Kilkenny & Raley and began a long and satisfying legal career. For several years he was also a partner in the law firm of Fabre, Collins & Kottkamp with his friends Harold Fabre and John Kottkamp. After his sons Michael and Robert became lawyers and moved back to Pendleton, Robert founded the Pendleton law firm, Collins & Collins, in 1980, where he spent the rest of his career, practicing law with his sons. In 2001, he was recognized by the Oregon State Bar for 50 years of distinguished legal service in Oregon. Bob was a member of the Oregon State Bar, Pendleton Elks Club, Kiwanis Club, past member of the Kentucky Bar Association and was active in the Girl Scouts of America. Robert loved to hunt and fish and one of his greatest joys was teaching his many grandkids to fish. He and Ruth loved salmon fishing on the Oregon coast, traveling with friends and picking berries and mushrooming in the Blue Mountains. His greatest pleasure came from the many family celebrations and events at the family home that he and Ruth built on McKay Creek. Bob loved the Wallowa Mountains and took the kids on many pack trips to the high lakes. Bob was predeceased by his parents and five siblings. After Ruth's death in 2004, Bob married a childhood friend, Mary Emily Thompson of Louisville, Kentucky. He is survived by his second wife, Mary Emily, children Robert W. Collins, Jr. Donna, Michael B. Collins Shannon, Kimberlee C. Morrow Vern, John K. Collins, eleven grandchildren and four great grandchildren; and Mary Emily's children, Steve Thompson and Sarah Rankin of Louisville, Kentucky and Anne Lanz of Birmingham, Alabama. Disposition will be by cremation. Family Inurnment will be held on Friday, May 4th, at 2:00 P.M. at Olney Cemetery in Pendleton. A memorial service will be held Friday, May 4th at 3:30 P.M. at the First Presbyterian Church in Pendleton. Anyone wishing to make contributions on behalf of Robert may donate to the Alzheimer's Foundation of America or St. Anthony's Home Health and Hospice, through Burns Mortuary of Pendleton, PO Box 489, Pendleton, OR 97801. Send condolences by signing the online guestbook at Burns Mortuary of Pendleton handled arrangements.

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Lynn Hampton
   Posted Tue April 03, 2012
I recollect your Dad with fondness and respect. He was a model lawyer to John and me when we first opened our doors as Hampton and Hampton many years ago. He was so courteous and professional, while at the same time being a true advocate for his clients. I was very interested to read of his military service in one of the most dangerous theatres of WWII. Please accept our condolences.

Richard Winter
   Posted Tue April 03, 2012
I am sorry for your loss. Richard

Susan Kays
   Posted Tue April 03, 2012
Hello Donna and Rob, My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your families at this time of loss and change. Love, Susan Morrow Kays

Philip & Linda Ruud
   Posted Tue April 03, 2012
It has been a pleasure working with Bob through the years. He was always a very kind person and always had a smile. He will be missed. The good memories will always be with us. May your memories bring you comfort today and days to come. With Deepest Sympathies.

Callie Lunn
   Posted Tue April 03, 2012
Rob, Our thoughts and prayers are with you in the loss of your dad. I remember being at Aunt Mary's when I was young and coming over to your house to play and your mom and dad there. Callie & Mike

Suzanne Colton
   Posted Tue April 03, 2012
I feel privileged to have known Bob Collins. My most vivid memory is being at his home about twenty six years ago and seeing him and Ruth in the backyard, enjoying their vast view and each other. Bob had a strong and independent spirit. He was the father to a wonderful family and they will remain a tribute to both him and Ruth.

Louise Thompson
   Posted Wed April 04, 2012
To My Collins Family: How does one say how much you have all meant in my life? From those times as children when your parents could make us mind our P's and Q's just as well as our own we respected our elders to comunications in our adulthood when we still respected our elders. Letting go of our "rocks" is always difficult, but remember, and I can speak from experience, our loved ones never leave our head, heart and soul. I am thinking of you all, Louise

Tara & Dan Fleshman
   Posted Thu April 05, 2012
Rob, Mike, Kim and John, Dan and I are thinking of you at this time of loss. I remember when Trisha was the "cleaning person/janitor" at Collins and Collins and worked for Bob, I remember thinking as a little kid, gosh maybe one day I can get to do that too! : Funny what memories we all remember. I hope you are remembering all of the good times your family had all together. Tara and Dan

Glenna Newquist Bushnell O'Dell
   Posted Fri April 06, 2012
I am very sorry to hear about Mr. Collins' passing. I worked for him as a legal secretary in the early 70's. My Father died from Alzheimer's disease and my present husband is currently suffering from the middle stages of the disease. Sincere regards. Glenna Newquist Bushnell O'Dell

Paula Smootz
   Posted Tue April 10, 2012
Rob, Mike, Kim & John, I was so sorry to here of the loss of your Dad. Even though I know you were expecting this, your never ready to have someone so loved in your life leave you. My thoughts are with you today and in the coming months as you adjust to not having your Dad here with you. With Warmth, Paula

Timothy J. Flint
   Posted Fri April 13, 2012
Rob, Donna and family, My thoughts and concerns are with you during this time of sadness and loss as well as always. Take care of each other my friends! Xo Tim

Linda & Dan Leighty
   Posted Mon April 16, 2012
Rob, Mike and family: I'm so sorry to hear your dad passed away, you know he'll be missed. You all have close families, so I know you are supporting each other through this. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.

Melodi Hawkins Krol
   Posted Sun April 29, 2012
I'm so very sorry for your families loss. Hugs and prayers to give you strength through this heart breaking time. You are in my thoughts and prayers, Melodi Hawkins Krol

Melodi Hawkins Krol
   Posted Sun April 29, 2012
I'm so very sorry for your families loss. Hugs and prayers to give you strength through this heart breaking time. You are in my thoughts and prayers, Melodi Hawkins Krol

Raley Peterson
   Posted Tue May 01, 2012
I was saddened to read of Bob's passing. He was a damn fine lawyer.

Tom Danner
   Posted Thu May 03, 2012
With deepest condolences from our family to yours.

Gwen Fjeld
   Posted Thu May 03, 2012
Oh, but what a true gentleman your father was! The smile, the greeting including a sparkle in those intelligent blue eyes. Standing to offer a chair, and to enjoy a coffee together. Welcoming me into his world and inviting me to partake in a privileged friendship. I am forever grateful to have known Bob. My arms and my heart are open to the Collins family as we celebrate Bob's life tomorrow. Thoughtfully, Gwen Sally

Mark & Barb Warner
   Posted Fri May 04, 2012
Our deepest sympathy for your loss.

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