PRINCETON —áNina M. Collins, 73, of Princeton, formerly of New York City and Cassville and Lancaster, Wis., died peacefully at her home of ALS at 12:15 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2019.
Nina was born Aug. 28, 1946, in Mt. Pleasant, Mich., the daughter of Harold Emile and Nathalie Margaret (Fluke) Collins.
She grew up in Clare, Mich., and Brookfield, Ill. She attended Riverside-Brookfield High School, and was active in drama and music, playing violin in her father’s orchestra, and volunteering at the veterans’ hospital.
Nina attended Drake University and later moved to New York to pursue an acting career. A student of Uta Hagen, Nina appeared in many off-Broadway plays while continuing her education at Marymount College. She subsequently worked in New York law offices and advertising agencies, organizing national conferences for the Society of Plastics Industry, and serving as executive assistant to the vice president of Nordeman Grimm, Inc., an international executive search firm, and to the president of Sacks & Rosen, Inc., an international advertising agency.
Nina continued her commitment to volunteer work, spending many weekends and vacations distributing meals for the underprivileged in New York churches.
Nina moved to Cassville, Wis., in 1992 to care for her father, who was in failing health. She remained in the Midwest after his death, living in Dubuque, Iowa, and Lancaster, Wis., and working as human resource manager in area firms, and also caring for disabled clients through Homeward Bound.
Nina loved attending the opera, the symphony, and plays in New York and Massachusetts with her sister, and later continued this with many trips to the Art Institute of Chicago, the Lyric Opera and the Chicago Symphony, and travels to Greece, Vieques, St. Croix and Puerto Rico, and family vacations in Wisconsin, Minnesota and California.
She moved to Princeton in 2018, to be closer to her sister as her health declined.
She was devoted to her family and brought untold hours of happiness to them and to her friends. She is survived by her sister, Dana Collins of Princeton, and her niece, Jen Collins (Ouellette) and family of Oakland, Calif. She was preceded in death by her parents and her niece, Caitlyn Dane.
To honor Nina’s life, funeral services will be at 6:45 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4, at the Behr Funeral Home, 1491 Main St. in Dubuque, Iowa, with Deacon Bill Biver officiating. Burial will be in Mt. Calvary Cemetery, where graveside services will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 5.
To celebrate Nina’s life, family and friends may visit from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday at the funeral home.
Memorials will be accepted by the family to be distributed among Nina’s favorite charities.
Online condolences may be left for the family at www.behrfuneralhome.com.