James P. “Jim” Collins of Slater passed away at the age of 89 on Sunday, Nov. 29, at Platte County Memorial Hospital in Wheatland after a long illness.
Jim Collins born on Saturday, Nov. 14, 1931, in Denver, Colo. to William and Florence (Kelly) Collins. Jim was born into a large loving family consisting of two sisters and four brothers. Jim met the love of his life, Nancy Stamm, at the age of 12. They married Feb. 10, 1950, and celebrated 70 beautiful years together. They had one son Jim (Cindy), four grandchildren Jamie, Travis, Kari (Steve), and Bree (Cody); eight great-grandchildren; and two great-great-grandchildren.
Jim was a very driven, hard-working man whose dream was to own and operate his own cattle ranch. He entered the career field as an electrician, starting Service Electric in Denver then moving on to own Platte Electric in Wheatland. To achieve his dream of owning his own cattle ranch in 1956 Jim began leasing several small ranches outside of Denver. He was then able to buy a ranch near Elizabeth, Colo., beginning his long career in ranching. His acquaintance with the Huston and Ashenhurst families drew the Collins’ to the Chugwater area, where they purchased the TY Basin Ranch in 1966. Along with running the ranch Jim also worked seasonally in Alaska as a master electrician for nine years on the north slope. He was at the front line in the cleanup of the Exxon Valdez oil spill of 1989.
With diligence and hard work Jim and Nancy purchased Sand Creek Ranch on Pathfinder Reservoir near Alcova, enlarging the operation to 700+ mother cows. They were able to enjoy 60+ years of a successful ranching career. Jim had a great passion for the outdoors, including hunting and fishing, which he passed down to not only his son but grandchildren as well. Jim was a loving husband, friend, father, and grandfather. He will be truly missed. The family would like to thank the staff and doctors at the Wheatland Hospital who cared for him in his last days.
Memorial funds can be sent to Chugwater Museum, In Care of Bill Teter, Box 86, Chugwater, WY 82210 or to Slater Hall, In care of Peggy Bise, 3 Goertz Road, Wheatland WY 82201.
The Gorman Funeral Homes – Platte Chapel of Wheatland, Wyoming is in charge of the arrangements. Condolences and fun memories may be sent to the family at www.gormanfh.com.