John Bertrand Collins, age 80 of Leonidas, died Saturday, Jan. 30, 2010, at his home following a long illness.
He was born in Sherwood Township on Dec. 23, 1929, the son of Russell and Ruth Ann (Homan) Collins.
John attended country schools and worked at his father’s grocery in Scotts while growing up. He later engaged in general farming and was a truck driver delivering livestock for Outman Farms in Leonidas.
John established his own backhoe and trenching business, and at various times served as the cemetery sexton for seven townships, including Leonidas, Wakeshma, and Athens. He was an active member of the Factoryville Bible Church where he served on the church board and was a Sunday school teacher and usher. Winters would find John plowing snow for family, neighbors, and shut-ins. He was a collector of Ageless Iron tractor cards.
John was married to Arlene Outman in Leonidas on Aug. 18, 1956. She survives along with five children, Beth Bennett (Rev. Curtis) of Mendon, John Samuel Collins of Leonidas, Ronald Collins (Lisa) of Athens, Carolyn Collins of Leonidas, and Sue Eakins (Donnie) of Kentwood; 21 grandchildren; five great grandchildren; three sisters, Mary Ann Lander (Tim) of Richland, Dorothy Handy of Battle Creek, and Shirley Aspinall (Cliff) of Gales Ferry, CT; a sister-in-law, Colleen Habermahl (Tim) of Lennon; several nieces, nephews, and cousins, including Richard Inman. He was preceded in death by his parents; his step-mother, Louise Wheeler-Collins; and by two brothers, David and Stephen Collins.
The family will receive friends from 5-8 p.m. Tuesday at the Eickhoff Funeral Home in Mendon, and from noon-
1 p.m. Wednesday at the Factoryville Bible Church, 1291 Factoryville Rd., Athens, MI 49011.
Funeral services will be 1 p.m. Wednesday at the church with Rev. Fred Goebert, Rev. Merritt Johnson, and Rev. Curtis Bennett officiating. Burial will be in Burr Oak Cemetery in the village of Athens.
Memorials may be directed to either the Factoryville Bible Church, the Leonidas Bible Church, or to the family. An online register is available at www.eickhofffuneralhome.com.