Tag Archives: Willis (Bill) Nelson Collins

Willis Collins, accomplished violinist

Willis (Bill) Nelson Collins, born Jan. 17, 1917, died May 28, 2012.

He was born in Palermo to Harlan D. and Lillian B. Collins. He went to school in Fulton, graduating in 1935. He began playing violin at age 11 and played in his high school orchestra as first chair violinist.

He continued his violin as a member of the Skagit Valley Symphony.

After high school, he worked for Oswego Falls Corporation while attending Syracuse University. In June 1941. he joined the U.S. Army Air Corp at Fort Niagara. He got his first taste of this wide open country when he was transferred to Geiger Field in Spokane, Wash. to begin work for the Air Corp Weather Service. Subsequent transfers led him to Seattle, where he spent time at Snoqualmie Pass reporting weather conditions, then back to Spokane to establish a weather history for the base.

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