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Eugene Edward Collins, Sr.

Eugene Edward Collins Sr., 82, of Portsmouth, passed from his earthly life to an eternal rest on Friday, Oct. 5, 2018 at the SOMC Hospice Center. He was born May 21, 1935 in Winston-Salem, NC, a son of the late James Arthur and Ada Bell Dillard Collins Henderson. Eugene was a member of Beulah Baptist Church where he had served as past chairman of the trustee board. He was a 1955 graduate of PHS and shortly after graduating, he was employed as a crane operator in the blast furnace at the former Empire-Detroit Steel Corp. where he retired in 1980. Eugene was then employed as the Deputy Director of the Community Action Organization. Eugene was also a veteran of the United States Army. A 50 year Mason of Trinity Lodge 9 in Portsmouth, he had held almost every elected and appointed office within the lodge.He is still very active in the lodge working on various committees and special projects serving as chairperson when necessary. Gene is the chairperson of the Portsmouth Inner City Development Corp. (PIDC), Past President of the 14th Street Community Center, Past President of the local NAACP and was a presenter at the 1983 All American City awards for the City of Portsmouth. Gene is a longtime member of Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission (OVRDC) where is is a member of the Executive Board and chairman of the Minority Caucus. He is also a member of the Minority Business Advisory Council and the Black Elected Democrats of Ohio He has received several certificates of appreciation from Ohio Crime Prevention Association, South Central District Council of Carpenters and Millwrights Local 207,the Liberty Bell Award, and recognition from the PHS athletic director for his support of the Portsmouth High School basketball program. Several years ago, Mr. Collins received the Martin Luther King Jr. “Ohio Humanitarian Award”  from the former governor of Ohio, Gov. George Voinovich.


Surviving is his wife, Sylvia Ann Byrd Collins, whom he married in Portsmouth, July 16, 1960; one son, Eugene E. (Jewell) Collins Jr. of Portsmouth; one daughter, Anita Maria Goodwin of Portsmouth; one brother, James Collins of Puyallup, WA ; one sister, Pearl (James) Corbitt of Columbus; three grandchildren, Sophia Mount, Jaddah Conteh-Kanu, Len Michael Collins; three great-grandchildren, Franklin Harris III, Gabriel Harris, Alexandra Evelyn Mount and many nieces, nephews and cousins and a host of friends. He was also preceded in death by two sisters; Kathryn Cavanaugh and Brenda Henderson.

Funeral services will be held Thursday at 11 AM at Beulah Baptist Church with Bishop Gonelcha Askew officiating. The family will receive friends at the RALPH F. SCOTT FUNERAL HOME in Portsmouth Wednesday  from 5 to 8 PM and at the church from 10 AM until the funeral hour Thursday. Interment will follow in the Memorial Burial Park. A Masonic service will be conducted Wednesday at 8 PM at the funeral home by Trinity Lodge 9. Military graveside rites will be conducted by James Dickey Post 23 of the American Legion. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be sent to; SOMC Hospice, 2201 25th Street, Portsmouth, OH 45662,  Ohio River Valley Type 1 Diabetes Assn., c/o Melissa Sarver, P.O. Box 357 Wheelersburg, OH 45694 or Trojan Athletic Boosters, P.O. Box 1008, Portsmouth, OH 45662

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