Collins

William E. Collins II

March 6, 1949 – June 6, 2020

A gathering to honor the life of Bill Collins, 71-year-old Kaycee resident who passed away Saturday morning at the home of his son in Evansville, will be held at 6 p.m. Friday, June 12 in his home at 1380 Sussex Road in Kaycee with Rev. Danny Davis and Rev. Steve Adams officiating. Donations in Bill’s memory may be made to Grace Mission Baptist Church in care of Harness Funeral Home at 351 N. Adams in Buffalo. Online condolences may be made at www.harnessfuneralhome.com

William Earl Collins II was born on March 6, 1949 in Bradenton, Florida to William and Annie Collins. At the age of 2, his family moved to Hazelhurst, Georgia where he attended first grade. In 1957 they moved to Waycross, Georgia, and he attended second grade. In 1958 they moved to St. Petersburg, Florida where he attended junior high and Northeast High School. In March 1966 he joined the U.S. Army and went to basic training at Fort Benning, Georgia where he received his GED. He was transferred to Fort Sill, Oklahoma for AIT Artillery School. He spent a year in Germany before getting his orders for Vietnam. He spent from July 1967 until July 1968 in Vietnam with an artillery unit during the Vietnam War and returned to be discharged from Fort Hood, Texas in 1969. He returned to St. Petersburg where he was married to Jana Dean. They had one son Bill and divorced in 1972. In October of 1973 Bill moved to Colorado Springs where he lived for four years. During that time he met Beatrice Madden and they had one daughter Maria. In 1976 Bill married Lorrene Smith and they had one son John in 1977. They then moved to Gillette where he worked various carpenter jobs. In 1978 he took a job with Permian Oil Co. as a gauger. Jessica was born in June of 1978, they moved to Kaycee and Bill continued working as a gauger. In 1982 Luke was born and Bill later went to work for Key Trucking where he worked from 1991 until 2000. Ill health forced him to retire and he continued living in Kaycee until his death.

Bill was saved in 1961 at the age of 12 while watching a Billy Graham crusade. He attended Grace Mission Baptist Church where he was a member for 42 years. He enjoyed spending time with his family and friends. 

He is survived by three sons, John Collins of Buffalo, Luke Collins and his wife Sarah of Evansville and Bill Raus of Gulf Shores, Alabama; two daughters, Jessica Collins of Estes Park, Colorado and Maria Madden of Rapid City, South Dakota; four sisters, Trish Acree, Linda (Nina) Ramerez and Kathy Collins all of St. Petersburg, Florida, and Ann Yoder of Houston; and one stepsister Liz Ford of Sioux City, Iowa; 10 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents and one sister Terry Ann Robinson.