James Howard Collins of St. James, Missouri, formerly of Cuba, was born Tuesday, October 15, 1918 at Berryman, Missouri to the union of Perle and Hallie Gertrude (Nee: Metcalf) Collins and left from this life on Sunday, September 17, 2017 at the Missouri Veterans Home of St. James at the age of 98 years.
James proudly served in the United States Navy from January 30, 1942 till October 12, 1953. James served during World War II and the Korean War. He earned the Victory Medal, American Area Medal, Asiatic Pacific Medal, Philippine Liberation Medal, Japanese Occupation Medal, Korean Service Medal, United Nations Medal and the China Service Medal. His unit, the U.S.S. Yorktown, received the “Presidential Unit Citation” for extraordinary heroism in action again enemy forces in the air, at sea and on shore in the Pacific War Area.
Before leaving for the Navy, James worked at Pete’s Midway Motor Company in Steelville. After returning home from the war, James went to work inspecting transformers for an electric company in St. Louis. On February 11, 1981, after many years of dedicated service, James retired from Wagner Electric as a power transformer tester.
James was married to Margaret A. Woods and they were the proud parents of two sons; Howard and Harold. On January 29, 1972 James married Mary Lou Nichols Trojanowski and became the step father of James “Jimmy”.
After retiring James and Mary Lou moved to Cuba. They always planted a garden each year and James was a longtime St. Louis Cardinals baseball fan. In his younger years, he enjoyed hunting and fishing.
James was a loving son, brother, husband, father, grandfather, uncle, brother-in-law and friend of many. He will be truly missed by who knew and loved him.
He is preceded in death by his parents Perle and Hallie Collins, wives Margaret and Mary Lou Collins, two brothers; Hadley Collins and Delmar Lynton Collins, one sister Maxine C. Petz and other family and friends.
Those who are left to treasure his memory and to continue his legacy are his two sons; Howard J. Collins of Jackson, Missouri and Harold J. and wife Laura Collins of Cape Girardeau, Missouri, special niece and caretaker Dorothy Collins of Steelville, step son James Floyd McMillen of Viburnum, Missouri, grandson Alan Collins of Delta, Missouri, granddaughter Caylee Collins of Jackson, Missouri, nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews and a host of other relatives and friends.
Visitation will be Thursday, September 21, 2017 from 11:00 a.m. till 1:00 p.m. at the Mizell Funeral Home, 904 W Washington Street, Cuba.
Funeral service will be held at 1:00 p.m. Thursday, September 21, 2017 at the Mizell Funeral Home of Cuba with Pastor Don Martin officiating. Special recorded music will be “Further Along”, “Amazing Grace” and “In the Garden”.
Interment, prayers and full military honors will follow at the Meramec Hills Cemetery, Cuba.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Missouri Veterans Home Residents Fund, 620 N. Jefferson Street, St. James, Missouri 65559 in James memory.
The Mizell Funeral Home of Cuba is honored to be serving the Collins family.