Joseph F. Collins, Esq.
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Topsfield - Retired Colonel Joseph F. Collins, 66, of Topsfield, beloved husband of Elizabeth (Johnson) Collins, passed away Wednesday, October 2, 2019, surrounded by his loving family.
Born in Salem he was the son of the late John W. and Margaret (Bradley) Collins. He was raised and educated in Salem and was a graduate of St. Johns Preparatory School in Danvers. Joseph continued his education receiving his undergraduate degree from Merrimack College and his Juris Doctor from Suffolk University School of Law.
A man devoted to his country, he dedicated his life to the service of others with over 30 years as a member of the United States Marine Corps. as well as in civilian life as a Criminal Defense Attorney and Public Defender.
A retired Colonel in the USMC, Col. Collins served overseas during the Bosnian Conflict and during the war in Iraq. A member of the Judge Advocate General, Col. Collins was known as an honorable, approachable, and steadfast leader, who was always willing to partake in any and all missions in which those under his charge were commanded.
Following his retirement from service, Joe was known as an honest, conscientious and reliable Criminal Defense Attorney. He was well respected in the law community and would often be recommended by his peers.
He was a loving husband, father, brother and uncle who cared deeply for his family. He will be fondly remembered as an avid sportsman, who enjoyed skiing, surfing, sailing and rugby. He will be deeply missed by his loving family, his many friends and the marines who he was honored to serve with.
Surviving Joseph in addition to his beloved wife Elizabeth, with whom he shared 32 years of marriage are his sons, John Collins of Tokyo, Japan and Martin Collins of Topsfield, his siblings, Katherine R. Collins of Medford, John B. Collins of Newburyport and Thomas Collins of Boston, his nieces, Susan Dwyer and her husband Ryan of Reading, Elizabeth Murray and her husband Kevin of Reading, his nephew Peter Collins and his wife Laura of Wakefield, his brothers-in-law, Wayne Dupont of Newburyport and Thomas Moran of Salem and his sister-in-law, Martha R. Collins of Newburyport. He was also the brother of the late Judith M. Moran and Mary C. Dupont.
Relatives and friends are invited to his funeral Mass which will be held in St. Rose of Lima Church, Park St., Topsfield on Monday, October 7, 2019 at 9 a.m.. Burial in Greenlawn Cemetery. In lieu of flowers expressions of sympathy may be made in Joseph's name to a charity of your choice. To share a memory or offer a condolence, please visit
Published on October 5, 2019


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6 posts

Larry Small
Oct 09, 2019
Many fond memories of Joe and the group of lifeguards at Forest River Park in the early 1970's! Best regards to Joe's family.
Rasim Tulumovic
Oct 09, 2019
Thank you for your mission in Bosnia. You are remembered as the friendliest, always smiling and ready to help person. Sincere condolences to the family.
Karen Farley Kapsourakis
Oct 07, 2019
My deepest deepest sympathy. I was a newsreporter and saw Joe many times in the courtroom. He was a good lawyer, fine gentlemen, always cooperative and very pleasant. I'm sure many will miss him.
Dugie Russell
Oct 06, 2019
One of the finest gentleman I had the pleasure to work with in the judicial system.
My Sincere condolences to the family. Iā€™m sorry I am on able to attend I am in the hospital. God bless!
Karyn Fisette
Oct 06, 2019
Such a friendly, nice man. I am so very sorry for your loss.
Martin Wallace
Oct 05, 2019
I worked many years with Joe never had an unkind word and was always trying to do the right thing.šŸ™