William Jerry Collins
(1942 - 2010)

William Jerry Collins

March 29, 1942

April 27, 2010

William Jerry Collins went to be with the Lord on Tuesday at Crestwood Medical Center in Huntsville. He was born March 29, 1942, in Arab to the late Dewey and Lucille Collins.

Surviving to honor and cherish his memory are his wife of 48 years, Joye Bernice Collins; sons and daughters-in-law, Keith and Cindy of Arab, Kevin and Heather of Enterprise, and Korey and Jennifer of Birmingham; five grandchildren, Will, Anna Hart, Presley, Jay, and Kate; brother and sister-in-law, Larry and Carol; and sisters, Barbara Scott, Carolyn Parker and husband Billy, and Jane Saylor and husband Mike. He was preceded in death by one sister, Nellie Ruth Camp (Howard); brother-in-law, Kenneth Scott; and one niece, Emily Collins.

He was a faithful and devoted member of Arab First Baptist Church. He was ordained as a deacon in January 1976, served as deacon chairman for many years, and served as Sunday school superintendent for over 25 years. He also served on numerous church committees, including the pastor search, personnel, and building committees. His passion was the Community Thanksgiving Outreach Program that ministered to the physical and spiritual needs of the less fortunate.

He was active in the recreational sports program in Arab, especially those that involved his sons. In addition to coaching little league baseball for many years, he served on the Park and Recreation Board at the time of construction of the Arab Recreation Center.

Jerry devoted over 40 years to Marshall Space Flight Center as a system administration professional. He began his career at Marshall in July 1967 as a data processing consultant and most recently served as systems administration lead for a combination of system and database administrators. He supported systems that provided crucial services for the International Space Station and space shuttle programs. Jerry was also a key player in the research and development of over 20 special projects supported within the Mission Operations Lab. During his career at Marshall's Huntsville Operations Support Center (HOSC), he mastered a number of platforms ranging from Unisys to Red Hat Linux. As a senior member of the system administration team, Jerry provided outstanding mentoring to fellow team members and colleagues. He always instilled the "can do" attitude in his team.

Jerry's life reflected his favorite Bible verse, "And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love" (I Corinthians 13:13).

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