Avid traveller and family-woman who loved sports just as much as cooking

Laura Maxine Collins, 79, formerly of Camdenton, Mo., passed away Easter Sunday, April 24, 2011 at her new residence in Overland Park, Kan., where she had recently moved.
Maxine was born on Oct. 16, 1931, in McBaine, Mo., the second child to the late William R. Moreau and Exie L. (Hunt) Moreau. After moving to Columbia, Mo., she graduated from Hickman High School in 1948. Maxine furthered her education in the secretarial field and held various positions with Columbia businesses and institutions. She was united in marriage on April 25, 1951, in Columbia, Mo., to John A. Collins, with whom she shared 58 years. They lived in Columbia, Macon and Cameron, Mo., before moving to Grinnell, Iowa, where they made their home from 1963-1982. During that time, Maxine worked as an executive secretary for Stadiums Unlimited. She was a member of Beta Sigma Phi as well as other organizations and clubs in Grinnell.
Maxine and John relocated to Camdenton, Mo., in 1982 to be closer to family and to escape the harsh Iowa winters.  She worked briefly for La-Cam Counseling in Camdenton until 1987, when she joined John in full retirement. In the years thereafter, the home which she loved so much grew in its welcoming beauty, warmth and comfort; structurally refined by Maxine and John’s toiling efforts and deeply enriched by the addition of daughters-in-law, grandchildren and a great grandchild.
Maxine was a devoted wife and mother who gave of herself endlessly for her family. She saw to it that John and the boys were clean, well groomed, well dressed and, most importantly to her, well fed. School functions, band concerts, sporting events and graduations filled Maxine’s activity calendar. She especially enjoyed sports of all kinds, whether as a participant or a spectator. Maxine was an accomplished and competitive bowler and golfer, winning tournaments and appearing on TV.  At home, she was as comfortable with a croquet mallet, badminton racquet, pool cue or table tennis paddle in hand as she was with a spatula or rolling pin. She mastered many card and board games but was at her best at the bridge table.  Maxine acquired a taste for travel soon after moving to Camdenton often accompanying John on his business trips into the southwestern United States.  Later, she ventured with friends or family members to many exciting and memorable local, regional, national and international destinations.
Maxine is survived by three sons, David Collins and wife Nina of Little Rock, Arkansas, Bruce Collins and wife Jana of Overland Park, Kansas and John Collins and wife Patti of Chesterfield, Missouri; nine grandchildren, Alissa, Lauren, and Kristen Collins of Little Rock, Arkansas, Christina Slay and husband Brandon of Colorado Springs, Colorado, Samuel, Scott and Blaire Collins of Overland Park, Kansas and Jack and Jason Collins of Chesterfield, Missouri; and one great-grandson, Alex Collins of Overland Park, Kansas. Maxine anticipated the birth of her first great-granddaughter Sydney Slay in May.
Maxine was preceded in death by her loving husband, John, her parents, William R. and Exie L. Moreau, two brothers, Lloyd W. Moreau, Robert N. Moreau and one sister Martha A. Plogstead.
Mary (Collins) Patton, Maxine’s sister-in-law, was her angel on earth for the last few years.  Without Mary’s help and assistance to Maxine during John’s illness and her own, so much would not have been possible and the family is forever indebted.
A graveside memorial service will be held on Saturday, April 30 at 1 p.m. at Memorial Park Cemetery in Columbia, Mo. Online obituary, tributes and guest registry: www.johnsoncountychapel.com  
The family is deeply thankful for the professional staff of Sunflower Health Care Hospice and the care provided for Maxine in Overland Park.  
Memorial contributions to the Sunflower Health Care Hospice, 7398 W 162nd Terrace, Stilwell, KS, 66085 are encouraged, in lieu of flowers.