Stonington - Donald Glenn Collier, 60, of Pawcatuck, died unexpectedly during an afternoon mountain biking trip on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.
He was the second of five children born to Donald R. and Elaine (King) Collier of Unionville. He had a deep connection to the water, whether rivers, lakes, or the open ocean, which formed during his childhood summers in Westbrook.
After graduation from Farmington High School (â€˜71), he joined the Navy to serve on submarines. He continued to return to these roots, building his own 30-ft sailboat, Vixen, which proudly bore its port of call as Mystic. He traveled far on the planks of his labor, spending years exploring Florida, then the Caribbean and as far as South America.
He returned to Connecticut to raise his two daughters closer to family. He worked as a talented and indispensable marine mechanic at the Mystic Shipyard for 27 years, with a sense of ownership and pride in his work and commitment to going beyond standards for excellence. His love of the outdoors remained a defining part of his character, and he spent much of his free time mountain biking, hiking, kayaking, and mushroom hunting.
His willingness to help his friends and family without hesitation or expectations was something all who knew Don will not forget. He will be remembered as a good, pragmatic, generous, ambitious, and dedicated man of action.
He is survived by his father; his loving daughters, Melissa and April; his son-in-law, Andy Meek; his siblings, Russell Collier of Pittsfield, Maine, Norman Collier of Canton, Candy Walker of Gettysburg, Pa., and Mandy Wright of Goshen, and their families; Kathy Point and her family; and Tamar Stearns and her family.
He is predeceased by his mother; and his best friend and brother-in-law, Timothy Stearns.
All are welcome to join a gathering to celebrate his life at 12:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 20, at the Mystic Yachting Center, 100 Essex St., Mystic.
In lieu of flowers, his family suggests donations to Dr. Edward P. Dunne Memorial Scholarship, a medical education scholarship in honor of a late family relative, or Habitat for Humanity International, to continue his volunteer efforts in Haiti.