Jeanette R. Collins, 92

Jeanette R. Collins, 92, of Sheffield, passed away Thursday, January 6, 2022 at the Sheffield Care Center in Sheffield, Iowa after a long life filled with love she joyfully shared with others.


She was born November 5, 1929 in Mason City, Iowa to Ralph and Ruth Geer. Ruth and Jeanette moved from Mason City to Aredale, Iowa to live with Ruth’s cousin, Susie Cutler, when Jeanette was 9 years old. As a pretty ‘big city’ girl, Jeanette made quite a splash in rural Aredale. Among those who took notice was handsome – and sometimes mischievous – neighbor boy, Darwin Collins.


Jeanette was lovingly raised by Ruth and Susie, attended grade school in Aredale and graduated from Hansell High School in 1947. Ruth and Susie dutifully drove young Jeanette to local roller skating rinks where she became an expert skater, dazzling everyone with her graceful dancing style. Later, her children watched in awe as their Mom danced her way around the rink at Sunday school roller skating parties.


Darwin finally won Jeanette’s heart, and they married on May 1, 1948. During more than 70 years of marriage, they laughed a lot, cried some, raised four children, scrimped and saved, operated a successful business together, helped others, made countless friends over coffee, wintered in Arizona, and retired back to the farm where Jeanette grew up.


Her life was filled with music. A gifted, self-taught pianist, she taught piano to others beginning in her high school days. She especially enjoyed the years teaching piano and vocal music at St. Patrick and Sacred Heart Schools in Dougherty and Rockwell. Jeanette shared her musical gift at countless church services and programs, Bible schools, weddings, funerals, sing-a-longs, and other get-togethers.


Nothing was more important to Jeanette than her deep, abiding faith in God and her family. She lit up when family came home to the farm and bustled around to provide a warm welcome and a feast of food. She was the most loving and fun Mom and Grandma a kid could have. Her grandkids have lifelong memories of time spent with Grandma making mud pies, riding the 3-wheeled bike ‘Bluebell’, strolling down the lane singing Zippedy Do Da, and launching snakeweed boats down the creek “all the way to China.”


Jeanette is survived by daughters Patti (Gene) Persons of Ankeny, Candy (Dave) Culp of North Port, Florida, son Tim (Susan) Collins of Sheffield, eleven grandchildren, twenty-seven great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild – all of whom are grateful to have shared her life.


She was preceded in death by her parents, Susie Cutler, husband Darwin, and son Mike.


A joint funeral service for Jeanette and Darwin will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, January 15, 2022, at West Fork United Methodist Church, rural Sheffield. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at the church. Burial will take place in the West Fork Cemetery at a later date. The Counsell Woodley Funeral Home of Hampton is caring for Jeanette and her family.


Sheffield Press & Pioneer Enterprise

The Sheffield Press
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PO Box 36
Sheffield, IA 50475
Phone:  641-456-2585

The Pioneer Enterprise
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Rockwell, IA 50469
Phone:  641.456.2585

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