Dear Karen & family, I only just learned of "Uncle Ronnie's" passing from a note in the Summer edition of the ODU Monarch publication. Having read all the previously posted comments, I can tell Uncle Ronnie continued to touch many more lives long after the PAHS FMC Class of 1970. If it hadn't been for band, I probably would never have made it through HS, as band was one of the very few outlets in which I was allowed to participate. Things at home were constantly in flux & my band family was my only stability. Thank you Uncle Ronnie for all you did for so many kids both at PAHS & Green Run. My deepest condolences to the family.
Deecee (Davenport) Haslett
PAHS FMC '70
You will be missed, but not forgotten.
Princess Anne HS Drill Team 1973
He was a great person and Band Director for Princes Ann and Green Run High Schools. He will be missed. It was a pleasure for me to work with the Princes Ann Marching Cavaliers Parents Asso. for a while as their Treasurer and my wife working with the rifles. My wife and I send condolences to the family.
So very sorry for your loss!! Rest in peace Mr. Collins!! You made PAHS very proud to have the Marching Cavaliers lead by you!!!
Thanks, Mr Collins, for ALL you taught me about music, and playing my instrument. - Dennis Allard, MUCS RET, USN
Mr. Collins was a father to all who knew him. He never gave more than he asked of his students. I know he is working with Heaven's Band!
Ronald and I were high school classmates and I see that he became the good, honorable man that the boy was in 1961. My deepest condolences to his family.
Mr Collins was my music appreciation teacher in the tenth grade at Green run High School. Great man. He actually held my interest. that was over 23 years ago....may he rest in peace.
I enjoyed being a band parent especially selling Christmas Trees in the cold and Trips to Cary NC--for Competition but most of all was watching the kids on the fields and in concert and I still have that opportunity with one. The Arts--Music lives with us all of our lives. Wonder if he knew how much he affected all the kids who came his way--not all liked the discipline , but one had to tap that foot even now. Thank you and your Family. Constance Lue
Are you playing by Osmosis? You are a 'witnit'! Close only counts in horseshoes! Get into it as we descend into the abyss! Where are your dots? Where are your marching shoes? Osmosis again? It's a B flat, not a C! No, a B flat! 'Witnit!' You are supposed to be there, not here! (shaking of head) Go! Osmosis?
Those are some of the life lessons I learned under you, Mr. Collins. I am so grateful for everything that you taught me; it wasn't just music that I learned, it was life lessons, discipline, pride, and love. My best memories are in the band room, under your scholarship. You were very influential on my life, and one of the reasons I am on my way to success. I have thought about you over the years, wondering what you were up to and how you were. I wish I could have been able to roll my eyes at you once more, but it wasn't to be. Teachers like you are a rarity, and I am blessed to have had you to yell at me when I needed it and listen when I didn't. Go play your trumpet with Louis Armstrong and show him how it's done....by osmosis.
Laurel Jones (Haesaert) c/o 2000
Mr. C, you made a lasting impression and I only hope that the evidence of your teaching shows through to those I meet. You will be missed.
Mr. Collins demanded much from us, and we were better off for that. He will be missed. GRHS class of '83
"To be on time is to be late. To be early is to be on time." Mr. Collins held his students to a higher standand and taught us that hard work and attention to detail led to big rewards both as a marching band and in our personal lives. He built the PAHS Band program and influenced hundreds of young people. What a gift he was to all of us.
-- Carol Burge Mawyer, Class of '79
He was an inspiration to all those student who he came to know. I was a student at PAHS when I first met Mr Collins. I graduated in 1978 and was a member of the Fabulous Marching Cavaliers on the drill team....He directed students with honesty, compassion, enthusiasm, and more importantly with much RESPECT. Prayers to your Family..Debra (Ray) Murnane.
Mr. Collins. Just the name brings fond memories of marching on the pavement at Princess Anne High School. What a positive impact he has made for so many. To win with dignity, have pride in hard work, and "perfection first time". Although I last saw Mr. Collins in 1979 I will never forget him. My heartfelt sympathy is sent to his family. Nancy Cawley Mayhan, PAHS 1979.
I am so sorry. I was in the band with Mr. Collins at Princess Anne in the later 70s. He taught me so much about hard work, discipline and musicianship. The 3 years in his band were some of the best of my life.
I am so sorry about your loss. I pray that God will bring you peace and that your family, faith,friends, and memories will bring you comfort at this difficult time.
Ron inspired so many kids throughout his 36 years and my siblings and I were fortunate enough to be some of them. Ron taught us that hard work and dedication to a task was the path to positive results. He taught us teamwork, leadership and how to strive for excellence. Most importantly he taught us to appreciate all forms of music which we all continue to enjoy today. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Collins family. God bless you and thanks for sharing your dad/husband with us. “Unity with Pride” The Hueber's 73, 74, 76 and 77
My condolences to the family. I am sorry to read of your loss. May the Almighty God (Psalm 83:18) comfort you during this difficult time.
My prayers go out to the family. Mr. Collins was a one of a kind, and I am glad to of had as a teacher. He didn't just teach us music and marching but about life and to try harder at whatever you were doing. Go BIG RED MACHINE 1975-78
Mr. Collins changed my life and my future! The band became my family and got me through the tough times at home. I will never forget my precious band years. My own children were expected to take band and my daughter married a high school director and my son is a professional musician! I never minded being called a sloppy farmer stepping over crop rows... :-) He made us part of something much bigger than ourselves...he made us believe we could do anything in life! He instilled passion for music and striving for excellence in all things. Thank you dear Mr. Collins! Loving hugs, Deb (Debbie Lue '74) Johnson email@example.com
I heard of Mr. Collins passing last week as I leaving the building. I took a few moments to go by the Bandroom here at PA, the kids were there preparing for a show, I just sat there amidst the noise and thought of the years I was member of the FMC with Mr Collins as director. It was as if I could still see him there on that podium. He was a good man may God bless and comfort his family.
Mr. Collins was an inspiration to many. He taught us music, but he also taught us about life. Most of my favorite high school memories revolve around the Fabulous Marching Cavaliers (1974-1977). He was a wonderful teacher and a wonderful person. He will truly be missed.
Mr. Collins laid the framework for many of us to succeed beyond the walls of the band room at P.A. He taught us discipline. He taught us that "good enough" is not enough. To this day, I can hear his words: "Unity with pride - perfection first time..."
Mr. Collins you were a stern taskmaster but you taught us lessons in life that carry to us and OUR legacies. Thank you for your devotion to generations of PA FMCs as well as the Green Run alums.
My love to your family -
Always and ever
Susan Prentice Irby
Every time I see the film "Mr. Holland's Opus", I fondly think of and thank Ronald Collins. And I've watched it many times! He taught me how to play, but more importantly how to emotionally connect to the music and respect it. He was stern, intimidating at times, but through that discipline he shared the one thing that every artist must possess, and that is the gift of focus. I think the last time I saw him was when he attended, quite unexpectedly, my mother's memorial service in 1978. His presence at that memorial meant a great deal to me and my family. Rest well, Dear Sir, and God Bless you and your family during this difficult time.
Words can not properly describe what Mr. Collins meant to me both musically and personally. He helped make me a lifelong lover of music and performing. He taught me from the 5th grade through my senior year in 1975 (PAHS Fabulous Marching
Cavaliers). Thank you and my condolences to his loved ones, Diane "Dee" Lue Pinnell.
The Nelson Family,We lived across the street during school days. Watson Ave. was the Riverside kids. My brother Jesse also was a band directer and taught in Woodbridge at one time. One of his favorite movies, Mr. Hollands Opus. What a wonderful life of dedication to his music. The Nelson Family.
I don't use the word mentor in my life but Mr. Collins is the only one I honor with that word. PAHS 1971-1974 FMC. I quit band after the 10th grade to take the drama class. He pleaded sternly about his vision for even more success to become the very first female drum major. We had old crappy uniforms then but he put me in black hot pants, the first Cavalier hat and the silk shirt. He sent me to Knoxville, TN to study techniques for the band. I traveled once at least with his wife Karen to view other bands and get ideas. We marched and won many state and local titles with his changes and visions, I even won best drum major in the state in 1974. While this isn't about me I offer his magnificent visions. I hope Mrs. Collins and family will see these posts and know how much we love him. I have not stopped crying since the day he passed and shed deep tears with other members. Green Run...4 of us will be organizing a tribute to him in the fall on the PAHS football field during halftime. We will reach out to your members. To Mrs. Collins and family I'm I send blessings and I know you will have these comments and memories forever. I miss you and love you Mr. Collins.
As Princess Anne alum, Mr. Collins was one of the "good guys." Always caring, always inspiring, always nurturing. Everything you would want in a teacher and more. He was a sterling role model and one of the best people I have ever known. I was so sad to hear of his passing. My thoughts and prayers go out his family. We were so lucky to go to PAHS while he was there.
I was a member of the Fabulous Marching Cavaliers of Princess Anne High from 1971-74 and captain of the Drill Team my senior year. Mr. Collins' lessons about being the best you can be live in me to this day. I will always remember how he demanded the best of us while believing in us. God bless the Collins family, we are thinking of you at this time. Thank you for sharing Mr. Collins with all of us.
Growing up in New Bern NC Ronald was my neighbor and one of my best friends since we were in first grade thru high school. I have thought of Ronald many times over the past 50 years and was sad to hear of his passing. My prayers go out to all his family for your loss.
Myrtle Beach SC
Mr. Collins demonstrated a belief and dedication to his students that still echoes down through the years.
He served as an outstanding advocate of music education and encourager of so many careers both in and out of music. His students, spread across the nation, are active performers, educators, composers, producers, entrepreneurs, mothers, fathers, businessmen, businesswomen, and leaders in vastly divergent career paths.
Many of us remember him as a warm, funny, and down to earth personality. He set great challenges for his band, stayed at the forefront of innovation in marching and concert bands for multiple decades, and instilled in his students an awareness, through both serious and fun music literature, of music's important role in the enrichment of the human spirit.
Those of us fortunate enough to be in his band remember his deep abiding love for his family, evident in many conversations with him. We remember his integrity, as well as his dedication to his students.
I personally remember him believing in me before I even believed in myself. That influence led me to my life as a band director today. None of that would have been possible without Ron Collins, our band director. We will miss you, we thank you and we love you.
You were an amazing director, and role model to us all. Prayers to his family and friends.
You dont live next door to someone for 30 plus years and not grow close to him or his family. Karen, Heather, Ronnie, Ryan, and Marc I am so very sorry and extremely sad. Anything you need just call.
Karen. I am so very, very sorry to learn of Ron's passing. He was always a caring teacher and I know that he will always be remembered for his dedication. My prayers go out to you and the family. May the Lord bring peace and comfort to you all during this time of loss.
I had him as a teacher at Green Run High School in 1991. He was an amazing man. My thoughts and prayers go to his family
GRHS Marching Stallions 1982-1985. He set the expectations and then took no excuse. He produced lovers of music, competitors and life long learners. I can only hope that as a teacher I can impact students the way Mr. Collins did for all of us. His lessons will carry on in every student he touched.
Some of the best memories I have growing up were with the GRHS band under the direction of Ron Collins. He was dedicated to his craft and produced some of the finest HS bands ever. May he rest in peace...
I never knew Mr. Collins, but I knew plenty of people in band at Green Run who loved him. I know their hearts are heavy. My thoughts are with them and the family of Mr. Collins.
God bless! Sorry for your loss! Marc and family!
I hadn't spoken to Mr. Collins in many years, though I still think, of him often. The lessons I learned in his bandroom, and the appreciation for the music will be in my memories forever.
GRHS, class of 1984
I only had the honor of having Mr. Collins as my band director during my senior year at GRHS, but I'll always remember him as one of my greatest teachers and a good friend, and I feel blessed to have known him.
This man taught me so much about music...much more than I ever could have learned elsewhere. He also taught me about being a person and how to be kind and compassionate when it seemed there was no room for such things! I was so very fortunate to have been able to teach alongside him where once again this great man taught an all-too-willing to learn 'student'; me. It was so difficult to call him anything other than Mr. Collins even when I taught with him due to my immense respect for him. I am forever grateful to have stood in the presence of such a great man! Mr. Collins, rest in peace, sir! Your 'Ivy' will carry forth your legacy!
Band wasn't only about music.It was about life lessons.Mr.Collins thank you for the many you tought those of us who had you as our band ditector.You will be missed, but never forgotten.
The Best Band Teacher Ever. Always Remembered and your legacy will live through all of us, who have been blessed to have known you.
Thanks for being a great Teacher. God Bless. GRHS Marching Stallons 82-84
As a former student form GRHS, I am proud of the values you taught me through band. May you rest in peace and are now teaching the angels how to march in step!
I was part of the band at Green Run from 1986 through 1989. Mr. Collins impacted the lives of so many of his students. My condolences to Ron's family. Rest in peace, Ron!
Ronald, you have been a good friend since 1983. You have touched so many lives and be a positive influence to all. May you rest in peace good friend.
Thank you for your inspiration. GHS Marching Stallions '84-'86
Mr. Collins was a wonderful teacher and man. He not only taught us valueable life lessons he did not preach what he didn't practice. Class of 1987
I will always love you my dear uncle.