28.11.1959 – 16.12.2000
By Desley and Patrick Collins (Mitch’s
full name is Mitchell Craig Collins but, to us, he was “Mitch” from the time we
knew we were expecting him. We chose both of his names simply because we liked
Mitch Collins was a very social person whose life was characterised by the way
he positively affected the lives of his numerous friends and relations. His
relationship with his brother Michael was mutually loving and supportive. This
grew from day one, when Mitch first saw his “baby brother Mokol”. In later
years, Michael’s partner Carol and their three sons Jae, Ryan & Cody also grew
to love him dearly. To his daughter Bobbi and most of his cousins he was the
leader of his generation within our family. He was highly intelligent, ruggedly
handsome and extremely well built (176 cm’s and 102 kgs). He travelled widely
within Australia and overseas. He had a flair for building design, which he was
formalising at the QUT by a Bachelor of Applied Science (Construction
Management). He had completed 2 years of this 4 year degree at the time of his
Mitch lived in his own town house at 16 Barnsley St, Hill End. He died a
bachelor but he has a step daughter Bobbi, who is the natural child of Mitch’s
former partner Donna Spence and the late Richard McLean. Richard, a close friend
of Mitch, had died in an industrial accident. Mitch raised Bobbi from when she
was in her second year of life. Their relationship was as loving as any that
exists between a parent and child. After completing high school, Bobbi returned
to live with Mitch until mid 2000 when she and her partner Tyson Cooney, set up
home together. They now have two children of their own, Indiahna and Phoenix.
Unfortunately, Mitch never got to meet his two lovely grandchildren.
Some biographical data:
On 28.11.59, Mitch was born in
the “intermediate” section of the Royal Brisbane Hospital. His mother is Desley
Kay (nee Crew) Collins, retired “teacher in charge” of hearing impaired
children. His father is Patrick James Collins, retired psychologist.
Mitch attended primary school at Mt Gravatt before attending Brisbane Grammar
School until grade 10. He then moved to a State School as he believed he would
be happier and more successful in a local co-ed school, although he later
insisted that Bobbi attend a private school (Scots College). Mitch, however,
left school during grade 11 and worked in a variety of jobs in the hotel
industry until 1983 when he became manager of a family off-road equipment
business until 1986. During 1987-89 he worked in the building industry, mainly
as a steel-fixer.
During 1990-1996 Mitch owned and operated the Muckadilla Hotel & Motel. His
partner Donna assisted him until they separated in May 1995. Mitch converted the
hotel from a quaint little country pub into a thriving resort-style operation.
1996-7: Mitch worked on two Collins family projects; (1) the construction
of industrial units at Capalaba and (2) the development and marketing of a rural
acreage estate at Purga near Ipswich.
1998-1999: Mitch, as a full time student, completed the first two years
of Bachelor of Applied Science (construction management) at the QUT. He gained
entry to this course, without matriculating, on the strength of his results in
aptitude tests. He was to have resumed studies in this degree on a part-time
basis in 2001. At the time of his death in December 2000, he was a working
director of a labour hire company. This position involved negotiating with
people from many levels of society throughout Australia.
Clubs and Associations: As a teenager Mitch was very active as a member
of Burleigh Heads Life Saving Club. He joined the Odin’s Warrior Motor Cycle
Club when in his late teens. He was also a member of the Brisbane Sporting Car
Club and competed in off road racing events during the 1980’s. He also raced
cars at Roma and nearby when he was a publican at Muckadilla. He was a member of
the Mitchell Freemasons from 1992 to 1999. He remained a non-tattooed member of
the Odin’s until he died. He had several very close friends from this club, but
his social circle extended far and wide. During the 1980’s, through his
promotion of the annual “Purga Creek” rock concert and the annual Custom and
Street motor cycle show, Mitch encouraged interaction between the club members
and the general public. He was their voice of reason.
At the conclusion of an inquest
into Mitch’s death during August-September 2001, the Brisbane Coroner Michael
Halliday charged a young heroin addict with his murder. As this issue is
potentially subjudice we will not elaborate on it further at this date.
Mitch was buried at Upper Mt
Gravatt Cemetery on 21.12.2000.
We are conscious that the above
is very brief but we will add to it as time passes. However, thank you on behalf
of Mitch for taking the time to read this basic sketch.