Margaret Collins(1920 - 2013)

Margaret Collins

Satellite Beach, FL

Margaret (Marge/Sis Poitz) Collins of Satellite Beach Florida, died peacefully at her home surrounded by those who loved her on December 15, 2013 at the age of 93. Marge was born on March 9, 1920 in Denver, CO, the youngest of three children, and was predeceased by her sister Helen and brother Richard.

She attended both parochial and public schools there. She graduated from North High School in 1938 and received a scholarship to Denver University. She attended the university for two years, and then entered the business world, where she worked for a little over two years prior to joining the United States Marine Corps in August 1943.

She was sent to Camp LeJeune, NC, for boot camp training, and was then stationed at Cherry Point, NC. She was fortunate to be assigned to one of the choice positions open to females at that time—control tower operator. After spending six weeks in a control tower school at the naval air base in Atlanta, GA, she returned to Cherry Point—where she spent the remainder of her time in the service—working in both the clearance section of operations and in the control tower. It was a very exciting and adventuresome time for her. She loved the Marine life and formed many lifelong friendships.

She would have liked to remain in the service, but all Women Marines were given an honorable discharge at the end of the war. It wasn't until several years later that the Marines began accepting women into the Corps. She was a sergeant when she was discharged in December 1945. She applied for a control tower position at Denver Airport and was told by the man in charge "Little lady, women can't do this job." By then she had flying in her blood, so she became an airline stewardess and flew with Continental Airlines for two years. It was during this time that she met her future husband (Brad), a fighter pilot in the USAF, and they married on December 26, 1948.

For the next 30 years, she lived the life of an "Air Force wife," and they traveled extensively during that time. They were transferred approximately every three years to assignments in new locations, including Germany—for a total of six years, on two separate assignments. Her husband retired from the Air Force in 1970 and they made their final move to Florida in 1972. Her husband, Preston (Brad) Collins died Nov 28th, 2010 after 62 years of marriage.

Marge was a member of the National Women Marines Association and a charter member of the Spaceport Chapter F1-8 that does volunteer work for many projects in the community. She also worked as a volunteer for 20 years in the county school district, and later did volunteer work with two charitable organizations, the Daily Bread and the Sharing Center.

Marge is survived by her daughter Cynda & son-in-law Marcel Collins Arsenault, grandson John Fidel Collins Arsenault, (granddaughter Erin Jellel Collins Arsenault predeceased her), Superior, Colorado; son Chris & daughter-in-law Ann Collins, Thousand Oaks, California; niece, Mary Helen Brumfiel, and great-niece and nephew, Kimberly Dawn and Rick Brumfiel, Denver, CO.

A funeral Mass will be held at the South Patrick Chapel, Saturday, January 11th at 10:30 am (Shearwater off S. Patrick Dr). There will be a Reception and Celebration of her life at her home immediately following the Mass at approximately noon. Friends may come directly to reception if they wish.

If interested in making a donation, her wish was a memorial donation to The Salvation Army, 1080 S. Hickory St., Melbourne, FL. 32901 or the Daily Bread, 815 East Fee Avenue, Melbourne, FL 32901.

Anyone wishing to share a memory, send the family a message, send flowers or place a memorial donation is asked to please visit Marge's memorial page at

Published in FLORIDA TODAY on Jan. 8, 2014