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Army 1st Lt. Robert W. Collins

Died April 7, 2010 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

24, of Tyrone, Ga.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 64th Armor Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, Fort Stewart, Ga.; died April 7 in Mosul, Iraq, when enemy forces attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device.

Snow didn’t deter him from West Point dream

The Associated Press

Robert Collins was more accustomed to the balmy weather of his hometown of Tyrone, Ga., where snow is rare. That didn’t stop him from attending the U.S. Military Academy, though, even after he visited on a snowy April day.

He decided he wanted to go after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. And a little snow didn’t stop him, said his mother, Sharon Collins.

“He seemed to really be having a neat experience, working with the local populace. He was thriving as a leader of men,” Sharon Collins told the Fayette Daily News of Georgia.

Collins, 24, was killed April 7 in Mosul, Iraq, when the vehicle he and another soldier were in hit a roadside bomb. He was assigned to Fort Stewart, Ga.

Back in high school, the soldier could always make his classmates laugh. He always wore a sweatband, all day long, earning him the nickname “Sweaty.” He also played fullback on the Sandy Creek High School football team for four years.

Football coach Chip Walker said Collins worked hard and encouraged his teammates to do the same.

“If my two boys can turn out like Robert, I will be satisfied,” Walker told the Daily News.

Collins also is survived by his father, Deacon, and girlfriend of eight years, Nicole Williams.

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