The live broadcast will open 15min prior to that start of the service at 11:30 a.m. MTN time.
Robert “Rob” Grey Collins.
On the evening of November 15, 2022, Rob passed away peacefully in his home in Clancy, Montana, while being attended to by his wife and children, as a result of pancreatic cancer. Rob was 75 years old.
Rob was born in Los Angeles, California, on March 20, 1947. He was the eldest of two children born to Ellyn Mae and Eddie Grey Collins. Rob grew up in Arcadia, California, and graduated from Arcadia High School in 1965. He graduated from the University of California Berkeley with an undergraduate degree and continued on at Berkeley to earn his Master’s of Science degree in Engineering. Rob soon after attended law school and graduated from the University of Southern California in 1976. After passing the California state bar, he started a 37-year long legal career in service to the states of California and Montana. From 1976 to 1991, Rob worked for the California Attorney General’s office in the State Lands section. In 1991, he and his family moved to the Helena, Montana, area where Rob began his long tenure as the lead of the legal unit of the newly created Natural Resource Damage Program (NRDP) for the State of Montana. At the NRDP, Rob led the litigation against ARCO for its toxic pollution of Butte’s Berkeley Pit; ensured the restoration of the Milltown Dam; and led various other legal actions that resulted in hundreds of millions of dollars in settlements to benefit environmental cleanup for Montanans. Rob retired from his prolific career in public service in 2013.
Rob not only lived a big life professionally, he was relentless and passionate in the rest of his life as well. All who knew him marveled at his unmatched energy for all things. Rob lived life to the limit, as his son Shane describes it. Rob’s children will never forget the many adventures he took them on during their childhood and beyond: backpacking in Glacier National Park; cross country skiing in the Elkhorn Mountains; hiking the South Hills of Helena near their home and hundreds of other trails all over the American West; kayaking and boating in the Clayoquot Sound of Vancouver Island; enjoying hot springs all over Montana; and so much more. Rob was a true adventurer and lived up to his moniker “Captain Grey.”
Rob wasn’t only passionate about the outdoors and his love for his family, he was a great lover of the arts and had a great appreciation for beauty. He was constantly seeking out live music to enjoy; collected hundred of records; loved Broadway musicals; was passionate about great films; was often found reading poetry and novels; and collected paintings and other artwork. His family appreciate so much the love of the arts Rob instilled in them.
Rob was a very generous man. He donated large amounts of land to the Prickly Pear Land Trust to enrich the hiking trails in South Helena and he would not hesitate to help a friend or family member in need.
Rob was preceded in death by his mother and father. He is survived by his wife Kay of Clancy, Montana; his daughter Natasha Collins Barry, son-in-law Nick Barry, and granddaughter Celia Barry of Sacramento, California; his son Shane Collins of Helena, Montana; his daughter Ellen Zheng, of San Diego, California; his brother Corbin Collins, sister-in-law Larri Fredericks, niece Rori Collins and nephew Case Collins of Oakland, California; and various cousins. He was briefly survived by his beloved first cousin Pamela Harper Larsen, who passed less than a day later in Washington state.
A celebration of Rob’s legendary life will be held at Anderson Stevenson Wilke funeral home on Monday, November 28, 2022, at 11:30 a.m. with a luncheon to follow in the Social Hall.
Memorial donations may be sent to the Prickly Pear Land Trust in honor of Rob.
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GARY HARPER says
I REMEMERR GROWING UP AND GOING SWIMMING AT YOUR HOUSE AND SPENDING THE HOLIDAYS WITH OUR FAMILIES. REST IN PEACE COUSIN ROB.