Karen Marie Collins of the Village of Winifred in The Villages, FL, died of heart failure on March 29th, 2021 at age 80.
Karen is survived by her husband, Donald Collins, her daughter Heidi Talbott of Matlacha, FL and her son Mark Graybill of the Village of Liberty Park.
Karen was born on Feb 23rd, 1941 to parents Albert and Irene Knudsen in Council Bluffs, IA. She graduated from Abraham Lincoln HS in 1958 and married Herbert Graybill of Council Bluffs, IA. The couple had three children together including Scott, who died at birth. Herbert passed away in 1985.
Karen was a dedicated mother and hard worker relocating to the San Francisco Bay area in 1972. She worked in civil planning in Contra Costa County, and in financial management at Cutter Laboratories in Berkeley, CA. She enjoyed hiking and the outdoors, instilling that love in her children. In 1980 she became a Realtor, relocating to Ventura County, CA with her children. In 1985 she returned to the SF Bay Area where she held positions in financial management with companies including NeXT Computer, private telecommunications companies, and C&H Sugar.
On Feb 15, 1995, she married Donald Collins of Palo Alto, CA. Together, they enjoyed 26 years of marriage and active life, including RV travel across the United States. They moved to The Villages in 2004. They enjoyed 45 cruises to many destinations all over the world, including Egypt, China, Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, and the Caribbean. Karen and Don enjoyed dragon boating together for many years, as part of championship level boating teams. Karen was a dedicated genealogist, tracing her own family trees back and through their breadth for many generations, as well as for the families of her extended family and friends. She enjoyed the active lifestyle provided by living in The Villages, including many social groups and Mah Jongg.
In accordance with Karen’s wishes, there will be no funeral ceremony. Her remains have been cremated, and will be interred at Don’s prepared plot in the Bushnell National Cemetery. Donations in her memory may be made to the Boulder Crest Foundation at https://bouldercrest.org/ toward the post-traumatic rehabilitation of veterans, first responders, and their families.