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Born: Apr 10, 1917

Date of Passing: Jun 28, 2007

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RODNEY ARNOLD COLLINS The family of Arnold Collins announce the death of their husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather on Thursday, June 28, 2007. He is survived by his wife and partner of almost 65 years, Eileen (Landerkin). He is the much loved father of their eight children and their spouses, Rod and Linda, Doug and Ginger, Gene and Melody, Jan and Irene, Merrilee and Bruce Stuart, Burton and Rosemary, Lisa and Derek Clarke, and Tammas and Lisa. He is also the much adored and respected grandfather of his very important grandchildren, Cameron, Mark and Delaney Collins, Shawn and Nichole Collins, Lyndsey and Melissa Collins, Derek and Marcy Collins, Paul and Darin Kozak, Raegan, Jana, Erin and Jordan Stuart, Kennedy, Carson and Reise Collins, Michelle, Melanie, and Graeme Clarke, Jocelyn, Aimee, Brooke, Brant and Brayden Collins, all of whom were better known by their nicknames! He also has five great-grandchildren. Arnold was born in Pilot Mound, MB on April 10, 1917, the second oldest of seven sons born to W. J. and Elizabeth (Kemp) Collins. He spent his entire life in Pilot Mound, dedicated to his family and community, but with an awareness of the world around him. As a young man in the late 1930s he made the most of limited opportunities and began what would be over 41 years in the grocery and dry goods businesses with Collins Food Market and the Arnel Store. Later on, as he and Eileen retired from business they started a farm operation with four of their sons. This provided an outlet for Arnold's love of growing things. Many people were grateful to receive his corn and potatoes, as well as his famous apple pies. Arnold was very involved in his community and over his lifetime devoted countless hours to boards, committees, events and projects for the surrounding area, including the local hospital board and town council. He was a leader and active participant in the local Chamber of Commerce, and was instrumental in starting the bi-annual smorgasbords that raise money for the community. His efforts helped lead to the building of the seniors care facility, Prairie View Lodge, which serves the vital needs of the area. As it would turn out, Arnold spent the last nine months of his life there and he was very grateful for all the care provided to him by its staff. Arnold was a member of the Pilot Mound Masonic Lodge, having recently received his 50 year pin. He was also a Shriner with Khartum Temple and Pembina Valley Shrine Club. He was very proud of his long association with and involvement in the Masons and Shriners. Although a business man all his life, Arnold's true love and calling was his music. As a young man he had wanted to be a concert violinist but that was not an opportunity available to him. However, he did find an outlet for his music, singing in local choirs and later playing in the Southglen and Shrine Orchestras. Arnold was the quintessential prairie boy, with a true love and admiration for the wide open spaces and prairie skies. He could see the beauty of the prairie, no matter what the season. He shared with his sons his love of fishing and hunting, and instilled in his children and grandchildren an appreciation of nature. Many hours were spent driving country roads admiring the crops and watching for wildlife. His wife and family were his pride and joy. At a time in life when the family had left home and most people downsize, he and Eileen built their country home large enough to accommodate family gatherings. A recent family gathering celebrated Arnold's 90th Birthday on April 10, 2007, a gold medal day . Funeral Service will be held on Wednesday, July 4, 2007 at 11:00 a.m. at the Pilot Mound United Church. Luncheon to follow at Kin Centre. In lieu of flowers, a donation in Arnold's memory to the Pilot Mound Millennium Recreation Complex, or to the Prairie View Lodge activity department, would be appreciated by the family.

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Jul 02, 2007

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