Obituary of Everett Collins
Everett “Bob” Collins departed this life on the afternoon of Tuesday, October 29th at his home after a long illness. He passed on in the company of his devoted and loving wife Karen and his beloved little friend Pearl. Bob was born in Onondaga County, New York on February 29th, 1940. His start in this world was a rough one. At a very early age, Bob was abandoned by his mother and resided in a Catholic orphanage in New York. It was a strict life to say the least. At age 10 Bob was placed on the Orphan Train and was relocated to a ranch in Oklahoma. Bob lived there with the cowboys that ran the ranch and grew up for the next seven years working right alongside them, learning all the skills needed to work a ranch. In 1957, Bob left the ranch at age 17 and enlisted in the United States Air Force. He served his country as a medic and served in many overseas assignments. Bob was very proud of his service to his country.
After being honorably discharged from the Air Force, Bob worked for many years in the trucking industry, much of that as a terminal manager. His time with the cowboys during his upbringing never left him and Bob fully embraced the western style of dress, life and philosophy. He was a very accomplished farrier and was known far and wide as the man to put shoes on your horses. He surrounded himself with horses and was an avid rider. During much of his life Bob found disappointment in marriages and relationships and true happiness seemed to elude him. That all changed when he met the love of his life, Karen Lynch. They were wed on June 6th, 1994, and spent most every day together right up until he passed away. They shared a common love of horses, music, dancing and the outdoors and enjoyed those things to the fullest during much of their marriage. There were tough times too with illnesses, family tragedy and the loss of beloved pets and many of the other storms that life can bestow upon you. They always had each other though and they leaned on, and relied on, each other to see them through. Bob’s marriage to Karen also brought something else into Bob’s life and that was the Lynch Family. Bob had never been part of such a bunch. Although far from perfect, Bob found himself in the midst of an intensely loyal and forgiving group of people who accepted him into their homes where he always had a place at the table and a voice in the room. Bob enjoyed his family very much and many times at family gatherings he could be seen just quietly taking it all in with a smile on his face, no doubt reflecting on harder, lonely times when he was unable to participate in such things. He especially treasured his relationships with all of his nieces and nephews. Bob lived out the last chapter of his life in Clinton, Missouri and during that time he became totally disabled from an illness that he contracted in North Africa during his service to his country. The illness diminished Bob’s physical capabilities but his mind remained sharp and he tried very hard to not let his disability effect his everyday life. Bob and Karen shared a very close relationship with Kate, Karen’s mother, who passed away on May 20th of this year. Bob and Kate had special relationship and he loved her very much. They all took many memorable trips together and never missed a New Year’s Eve party at the casino in KCMO. Bob also enjoyed more than anything, playing cards, and in particular, Texas Hold Em. He and Karen were both regulars at many gatherings in and around Clinton where card games were held and they have many, many friends from these experiences. As Bob’s health faded, playing cards was something he could still do and take pride in and it was something that he and Karen could do together.
Bob is survived by his wife Karen and their little dog Pearl of the home, two daughters, Chanlee Steele and family of Montgomery, Alabama and Billie Jean Pineda and family of Olympia, Washington. Also brother and sister in law Stephen and Patty Ayers, sister in law Michelle Bay all of Eudora, Missouri, brother and sister in law Roger and Jackie Schramm of Gladstone, Missouri, brother and sister in law Sonny and Pam Lynch of Clinton, Missouri and numerous nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.
Bob was a lover and fighter, a wild bull rider, a roper and a wrangler, a drinker and a thinker, an angel and devil. He could be fighting mad one minute and forgiving and kind the next. He loved a drink and a smoke and he was a card playing machine. If you called him in the middle of the night for help, he would come. He was kind to old folks and animals, he smiled easily. He loved God and believed in the forgiveness of the Lord. Bob was by no means a perfect man but he tried to be a good one. When you think of Bob’s life, don’t forget to picture the 10-year-old little boy he once was, looking out the window of that westbound train. Heading out into the great unknown. Alone. We love you Bob. We will see you down the road.
Mass of Christian Burial will be at noon Wednesday, November 6, 2019 at the Holy Rosary Catholic Church. The family will receive friends from 10:00 a.m. to noon, just prior to the Mass. Military services will be at the church following the Mass under the direction of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post 1894, Clinton. Interment will be at a later date in the Mt. Washington Cemetery in Independence, MO.