CORAL MAE COLLINS 

May 13, 1927 – November 11, 2015

Collins-DeathIt is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our dear Coral. She died peacefully at home with her beloved husband John and niece Stephanie at her side. She was a cherished aunt of Heather (Donald) Mah, Pam Colarossi and Stephanie (Richard) Collins. Coral will be sadly missed by sister-in-law Ada Ducker, brother-in-law Bruce and sister-in-law Mary Collins and cousins Bernard Carter and Ursula Blake of Australia. She was predeceased by parents Arthur and Margaret (nee Flynn) Ducker, brother Raymond, sister-in-law Donna Collins and niece Carolyn Collins. Coral was born in Winnipeg to parents who fostered some of Coral’s enduring traits such as Christian devotion, order, refinement and tidiness but also, warmth, gentleness, humour and love of music especially through her father who was a gifted saxophonist and trumpeter. Coral was a stunning young woman with auburn hair. She graduated from St. Mary’s Academy with superb secretarial skills and became the best in her field, working as an executive assistant to senior managers at the Canadian Wheat Board and Union Carbide. Coral moved to Toronto with her parents where she met and married John in 1961. John is a naturalist and coupled with Coral’s appreciation for nature and sensitivity for every living creature they achieved a perfect harmony. John’s work brought Coral to what was to become her beloved Manitoulin Island. For all of her 50 years on the Island she spent her life helping others. She contributed to her community by putting her secretarial and accounting skills as well as creativity to use at the School House Museum, John Budd Memorial Park, South Baymouth Board of Trade and the Community Hall Board. Much of this work was done on the manual typewriter, pre – computer. She demonstrated the highest standard of professionalism and dedication in all of her contributions. If you were suffering from ill health Coral would certainly be knitting a prayer shawl or baking some cookies for you. Her love, kindness and prayers touched so many in the community. Throughout her entire life Coral was devoted to her church and her Christian beliefs. She attended St. John’s Anglican Church in South Baymouth where she acted as treasurer and vestry clerk for many years. When that church was closed she attended St. Paul’s in Manitowaning, and also attended services at the United Churches in Tehkummah. Coral always had a deep desire to learn more and seek answers to questions and so was a keen participant in Bible studies. For the past three years these study groups were in Tehkummah where Coral was always willing to share her faith ideas with the group, as well as offer hospitality and an open door. All enjoyed her kindness and her insights into topics under discussion. Coral truly lived a life of offering up her spiritual gifts with an open heart. John and Coral shared the dream of a log cabin home. It started from an abandoned log house which had been repurposed as a barn on Mrs. Choma’s farm. Coral then catalogued each log and restored them, and then helped to create a log home on the shore of South Bay. Coral loved sitting by the fire with a favourite kitty curled up on her knee while knitting a prayer shawl. Her family was far flung; British Columbia, California, England and Australia. Coral and John hosted them all for many memorable holidays. A celebration of Coral’s life was held at St. Paul’s Anglican Church, Manitowaning on November 20, 2015; the Rt. Reverend Tom Corston presiding. We have comfort in knowing that she is with the Lord in peace and that we have loved her and shared our time with her. We would like to thank Dr. Stadnyk and the caring professional staff in hospital and homecare and the many friends and neighbours who supported the family through Coral’s illness.