Vale Neil Col­lier

Euroa Gazette - - FRONT PAGE -

NEIL Col­lier was born at the Royal Women’s Hos­pi­tal Mel­bourne on April 9, 1932, and was the fifth child of John and Mary Col­lier.

He shared eight other sib­lings - John, Joyce, Audry, Heather, Kevin, Bill, Jeanette and Peter.

War time years from 1939 to 1945 proved to be tough times for his par­ents, with nine kids.

Neil’s fa­ther op­er­ated his own car­ry­ing busi­ness un­der the name of Colo­nial Ex­press, which Neil would of­ten help out with af­ter school, clean­ing the trucks and as­sist­ing him with en­gines.

Once Neil turned 13 in April, he gained his Merit Cer­tifi­cate in Oc­to­ber that year and it was shortly af­ter his fa­ther de­cided he should start work­ing and com­mence jock­ey­ing on the truck with him.

In 1954 when Neil turned 21 he made his way to Euroa to live with his sis­ter Joyce and her hus­band Mick Brown in Eliz­a­beth Street.

He com­menced a new job felling tim­ber in the Strath­bo­gie Ranges un­der the guid­ance of Mick, who Neil used to de­scribe as a real le­gend in the bush.

Neil thor­oughly en­joyed life in the for­est, camp­ing out five days a week and would of­ten use the run down the moun­tain as a fit­ness ex­er­cise in place of foot­ball train­ing.

It was not long af­ter in 1955 when Neil fell in love with the love of his life Zel, and they mar­ried on June 25, 1955 and were blessed with four chil­dren - Lynne, Rod­ney, An­drew and Mark.

Neil played 13 sea­sons for Euroa in the Waranga North East League, and was of­ten re­ferred to as “Spi­der” by his team mates.

In 1963, 1964 and 1965 Neil was vice pres­i­dent of the Euroa Foot­ball Club and he also played in four pre­mier­ships for the club.

He held the po­si­tion of pres­i­dent at The Li­ons Club of Euroa from 1971 to 1972, and left the town shortly af­ter in 1973.

Neil and Zelda took off to take over a new busi­ness in Gool­gowi, which was a post of­fice and con­tin­u­ous man­ual tele­phone ex­change.

The ex­pe­ri­ence was a most re­ward­ing one for Zel and him­self.

The pair lived and ran the busi­ness there for 21 years, but found their way back to Euroa on Jan­uary 18, 1995.

Neil will be re­mem­bered as a fam­ily man, proud fa­ther and a de­voted grand and great grand­fa­ther.

FONDLY RE­MEM­BERED: Neil Col­lier along­side his wife Zelda.

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