Obituary of Albert E. Collins Jr.
Albie Collins passed away on May 17, 2019, at the age of 88 at Fairfield County House hospice in Stamford, CT. In the days before his passing he was kept constant company by three generations of his family.
Albie was born December 17, 1930 in Brooklyn, NY to Albert & Martha. He was raised in Forest Hills, NY with his older brother Bobby and younger brother Charlie. He attended Stuyvesant High School in New York City and spent summers at Camp Wigwam in Maine.
Albie attended Dartmouth College, graduating in 1952 with a B.A. in History. He was a star athlete, captain of the varsity squash and tennis teams and helped the Dartmouth men’s tennis team go undefeated and earn the number one ranking in New England during his senior year. In 2001, in recognition of his achievements, the Ivy League renamed its men’s tennis championship trophy to the Albie Collins Trophy in his honor.
After graduating from Dartmouth, Albie enlisted in the Air Force as a Second Lieutenant and entered the Korean War. He was Base Commander and Specialist in electronic countermeasures assigned to Tsushima Island between Japan and Korea, a base with important radar and logistical operations supporting the war. This experience had an enormous impact on his life; he experienced the responsibilities of managing an important asset, the beauty of the country and the people, and the terrible realities of the human impact of war on everyday people.
After the war, Albie had a successful career in the new field of computing. His career progressed from a job as systems analyst at AT&T, through a successful stint as a salesman for IBM and eventually in IT executive roles for major companies including W.R. Grace, PepsiCo and HBO.
He married Margaret Blood and settled in Rye, NY where they raised four children (Amy, Albie 3rd, Stephen & Michael). Albie’s family was the most important part of his life. Nothing made him happier than spending time with his family. He was immensely proud of his children and nine grandchildren.
Athletics were a huge part of Albie’s life from an early age. He joined the West Side Tennis Club in Forest Hills as a teenager and was a scorekeeper and ball boy for many National Championship and Davis Cup matches. He was a longtime member of Manursing Island Club in Rye, where he played for and coached the tennis team for over 50 years. In 1962 he started the Richardson Invitational in honor of a Manursing member who died young, and the tournament has been held every year since, attracting many of the best collegiate and professional players to compete.
In 1968 he was a member of the US Olympic team in Mexico. He competed in frontenis, a racquet sport played throughout the Spanish-speaking world.
After his retirement he remained busy working for the Athletic Department of Manhattanville College in Purchase, becoming the Director or Tennis and Head Men’s Tennis Coach, a position he held until he was 80 years old. He was involved in the launch of their Sports Business Management academic program.
He was a friend and mentor to many and had a genuine interest in all people and their lives. He loved telling stories, giving advice (often unsolicited) and had many friends from all walks of life.
His is survived by his brother Charlie (Gisela), his children Amy (Guy DeFeis), Albie, Stephen & Michael (Melissa Hieger), and his 9 grandchildren Max, Ian, Alex, Nick, Drew, Nate, Caroline, Eleanor and Annabelle. He is also survived by many friends.
Services will be held at Christ’s Church, Rye, NY at 10:30 AM on Friday, May 31stwith a reception to follow. Visiting hours will be held at Graham Funeral Home in Rye from 4:00 – 8:00pm on Thursday, May 30th. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to be made in the name of Annabelle Collins to the DDX3X Foundation (www.ddx3x.org).
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