Leslie Gay Darnell Collins passed away at the age of 60 on Sunday afternoon, May 3, 2020 at her home in Sherman, Texas. She was surrounded by family and friends who loved and cherished her.
Leslie was born July 29, 1959, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She is survived by her husband Mike, 4 siblings: Stefani Darnell, Melanie Nick (husband John), Clay Darnell, and Althea Smith (husband Doug), her children Kyle Collins and Sarah Garrett (husband Luke), her grandson Mike Collins (“Little Mike”), her nieces Lindsay Stone (husband Brett) and Alison Smith, her nephews Sean Darnell, Michael Darnell, Derek Smith, Daniel Smith, and Dustin Smith, her great nephews Parker Darnell, Cohen Darnell, and Elias Jackson, and her great nieces Emma Darnell and Claire Darnell. She is also survived by countless friends whom she considered family.
Leslie was preceded in death by her Nana, Vivian Sparling, her parents Robert Darnell and Sharon Wiley, and her brother and sister-in-law Michael and Pamela Darnell.
Leslie attended Riley Elementary, Madison Junior High, and Central High School, all in Tulsa. After graduating from Central in 1977, she attended East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma where she was a member of the Alpha Gamma Delta Sorority. Leslie received her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science in Human Services. She has remained close with numerous friends from her school days and was incredibly thankful for the love and support she received from her “Westside Tribe” and her sorority sisters.
Leslie was a probation officer for Dallas County for more than 25 years. She was passionate about her work and made a difference in the lives of many probationers over the years.
It was at East Central University where she first met the love of her life, Mike Collins. They reunited in 2007 and were married September 6, 2008. They made a lifetime of memories in their almost 12 years of marriage.
Leslie treasured her family and embraced every moment with them. She loved being a Wife, Mother, Sister, Aunt, and Mimi. To her nieces and nephews, she will always be their “Favorite Aunt Leslie.” She was the best gift giver and delighted in selecting that “just right” gift for each person. She loved to travel with Mike, to visit family, and to take family vacations. She was happiest when she was making others happy. Leslie touched everyone she met with her smile and her humor and never met a stranger. She inspired us all with her courage and strength.
We miss Leslie dearly but know that she was greeted with great joy by her Father in Heaven and those who preceded her. 2 Timothy 4:7 “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”
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