December 1, 1931 - November 20, 2020
MISHAWAKA, IN – Helen Ann Collins of Bonita Springs, FL and Mishawaka, IN went to be with the Lord on Friday, November 20, 2020. She will make Heaven a brighter place.
Helen was born on December 1, 1931, to the late Rudolph A. and Nellie J. (Mansfield) Goepfrich. Helen was born in South Bend and moved to Mishawaka in June 1970. After her husband retired they moved to Bonita Springs, FL but still spent the summer and part of the fall in Mishawaka.
On June 5, 1954, in South Bend, Helen married Thomas G. Collins who survives. Helen and Tom enjoyed 66 years of marriage before her passing.
Other survivors include two daughters, Constance Ann (Matthew) Lentsch of Mishawaka, IN and Mary Helen Wood of Bremen, IN; three sons, Michael Thomas (Tracy) Collins of Austin, TX; Patrick Kevin Collins of Mishawaka, IN; and Kevin Thomas Collins (Amy) of Roseville, CA. A fourth son, Terrence Michael Collins, died in 1999. She is also survived by 12 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.
In addition to her parents and son, her sisters, Joan Stevens and Margaret R. Zmudzinski; a brother, Charles Goepfrich; a son-in-law, Michael Wood; and one grandchild, Brian M. Collins, preceded Helen in death.
Helen was a homemaker and completely devoted her life to her husband and bringing up their children. She cherished her family above all else and treasured the time she could spend with her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Her success as a loving mother and grandmother is best illustrated by the successes of her children, who were shaped by her unconditional devotion and care. Her family has been forever enriched by her loving touch, and she will live on as her example of exceptional mothering is carried on in future generations.
Helen was a devoted member of St. Joseph Parish in Mishawaka for more than 50 years.
With her loving husband Tom at her side, Helen attended many Notre Dame football games both in Notre Dame Stadium and at Purdue when three of her sons were students there. She especially enjoyed dining at the erstwhile University Club after Notre Dame home football games. She loved reading, with a special interest in books about the exploration of the American West, working crossword puzzles, watching Jeopardy, and going to lunch with family and friends. She also greatly enjoyed collecting seashells along the beach in Bonita Springs and watching Notre Dame men’s and women’s basketball games on television.
A private family visitation will take place at Hahn Funeral Home on Monday, November 23, 2020, from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm. (public) A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 am, Tuesday, November 24, 2020, at St. Joseph Catholic Church Mishawaka with entombment to follow at Cedar Grove Cemetery. A Celebration of Helen’s life will take place at a later date.
Contributions may be made to St. Joseph Church, Mishawaka, IN or Center for Hospice, Mishawaka Campus. To leave the family an online condolence www.hahnfuneralhomes.com
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