We Remember

COLLINS, D.S. (Duke) J.D., Q.C., C.D.

May 6, 1925 — January 18, 2015

Darrall Stanley Collins, best known as “Duke” was born 6th May 1925 in Bredenbury, Saskatchewan and was the first child of John (Jack) and Emma Collins. During his time spent in Saskatchewan, he resided in various small towns, including Semans, Ituna, Abernathy, and Alameda. Duke graduated from High School in Alameda in June 1943 and immediately joined the Army. He was selected to attend pre-officers’ training in the Canadian Army University Course (CAUC) at Queens’ University, Kingston, Ontario. After a year at Queens’ he was transferred to Yarmouth, Nova Scotia where he served as a junior NCO in the basic training camp. While there, he applied for immediate service overseas and was transferred to Gagetown, N.B. as there was a need for reinforcements in Europe, particularly for driver-operators. He was promptly sent to England where he completed driver-operator’s training at Aldershot. In the fall of 1944, he was transferred to Europe where he became a member of the 4th Field Regt., 2nd Division, Canadian Artillery, where he served until the end of hostilities. While stationed in Gronigen Holland, he suffered a minor wound caused by shrapnel. As a result, for a short period of time he was sent back from the front lines to Ghent, Belgium to recuperate before returning to his Unit. Following the end of hostilities he spent time with his Unit before applying for service in the Far East (much to the disgust of his Commanding Officer). He was adamant in his decision because he felt that by the time he was repatriated to Canada and was trained in jungle warfare the war in the Far East would be over, as it turned out he was right. Upon his return to Canada in October, 1945 he was honourably discharged.


In January 1946 he began studies at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon and graduated with a law degree in the spring of 1949. He articled in Victoria, B.C., where he met his future wife (Pat Joiner) and in 1950, a very exciting year for Duke, married Pat and was also called to the bar in B.C.


Following his call to the bar, Duke and Pat moved to Terrace, B.C. where he began practising law in his own firm. It was in Terrace that Duke and Pat celebrated the birth of their first child, Kelly Stanley on June 13, 1952. The family lived in Terrace until 1953 when Duke accepted a position as Legal Officer for the Judge Advocate Branch of the Canadian Armed Forces and moved by himself to Ottawa (Pat and Kelly remained in Terrace). In January 1954, Duke was transferred to Europe where he served as a member of the Prosecuting/Defending team for the Canadian armed forces, and on April 17, 1954 they celebrated the birth of their second child, Darrall William (Bill) who was also born in Terrace. In 1955 Pat and the boys joined Duke in Germany and in October 1957 they transferred back to Ottawa. Duke continued to serve in the Office of the Judge Advocate General until the spring of 1958 when he ceased to be a member of the Military upon being appointed the Legal Advisor for the Yukon Territory. He and his family moved to Whitehorse where Duke and Pat celebrated the births of two more children; Vicki Patricia on October 7, 1958 and Robin Cyril on March 2, 1963. In Whitehorse, Duke remained the Legal Advisor until 1960 when he became a partner in the firm of Wylie and Collins. One of his many accomplishments was being appointed Queen’s Counsel by the Federal Government in 1968 while he was practicing law. He subsequently purchased his partner’s interest in the firm and carried on his practice until selling it to his associates in 1969 when he and his family relocated to North Vancouver, B.C.


In Vancouver he carried on practice primarily in Commercial Law until the fall of 1972 when he moved his family to Victoria and joined the firm of Pearlman & Lindholm. In November 1974, he was appointed to the bench as a Provincial Court Judge in New Westminster, B.C. and relocated his family back to North Vancouver. In 1978, Duke moved back to Terrace B.C where he served as the Administrative Judge for the Northwest Region of the Province for 3 years and returned to Vancouver Island in 1981 where he served as the Administrative Judge for South Vancouver Island for six years. Duke retired from full time duties in January, 1993 and was appointed ad hoc Judge in April 1993 and continued to serve the Court and the people of British Columbia until his retirement in October, 1995. Unfortunately, in April, 1998 Duke lost Pat, his beloved wife of 48 years to a sudden stroke. Duke met Susie at the Arbutus Ridge Golf Club and the two have been inseparable ever since.


Aside from his interest in the law, Duke had a real interest in the Military. While attending University in Saskatchewan he belonged to the Canadian Officers’ Training Corps (C.O.T.C). As an articling student in Victoria he was a member of the Reserves. While articling in Whitehorse, Y.T., he was the Commanding Officer of the Yukon Regiment and was awarded a Canadian Decoration in 1965. Upon his Discharge from the Reserves he held the rank of Major. In addition, Duke was a member of the Royal Canadian Legion and in 2013, received a pin and medal honouring him for 50 consecutive years of service.


Duke participated in a variety of sports including curling, golf, hockey, baseball, fastball, tennis, fishing and lawn bowling. Being a competitive curler his entire life, Duke was very proud that his team (Gord Carmichael Team from Duncan, BC) won the 1990 Masters Men Provincial Championship and then went on to win the Western Canadian Championship. In January, 1998, Duke was one of 60 curlers selected to represent Canada at the “Canadian Tour of Scotland – Strathcona Cup Championship” where the Canadian Team won the coveted “Cup”. Duke was an avid golfer and over the years was a member of many Golf Clubs, including the Capilano Golf and Country Club (West Vancouver), the Seymour Golf and Country Club (North Vancouver), and the Arbutus Ridge Golf Club on Vancouver Island for 22 years. Duke joined the Victoria Golf Club in 1972 when he first moved to Victoria and was recently awarded an honorary lifetime membership.


Duke was very active during his retirement years, travelling to various parts of the world including Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, the Far East, Israel, Europe, the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, Hawaii, Mexico as well as spending 12 winters in California with Susie. He especially enjoyed spending time with family, friends and his dogs (Sparky and Oliver). He continued to live and enjoy life on Vancouver Island (Arbutus Ridge, Cobble Hill and Victoria) until December 2014 when he re-located to Kelowna.


Throughout his life, in the many places he resided and visited, Duke made many connections with many people (too many to mention) and has enjoyed lifelong friendships. His passion for life will be missed by all who knew him.


May he rest in peace.



Please join us in a “Celebration of Duke’s Life” ceremony at the Victoria Golf Club, Victoria B.C. on May 9, 2015 from 1pm to 4pm.


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May 9, 2015 from 1pm to 4pm

Victoria Golf Club

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