- About Us
Martha passed away peacefully on February 20 at the age of 95. She was born in Detroit, grew up in Pleasant Ridge, MI. A very proud graduate of the University of Michigan and member of Delta Delta Delta sorority. In 1945 she married Thomas I. Wattles. They lived in Birmingham, MI, as well as in Bloomfield Hills, MI. He passed away in 1976. In 1978 she married Robert T. Collins. They were married until his death in 2012. They lived in Bloomfield Hills, as well as on the shores of Lake Michigan, near Pentwater. Martha was also preceded in death by her parents Alta Mero and Edward Shriver Frey, Jr. Surviving are her three children David Wattles (Nancy), Jane Wattles, John Wattles (Gail), and step-daughter Robin Collins Vermylen (Paul Jr.), four grandchildren, Katie Wattles, Christopher Wattles (fiancé Shay), Thomas Wattles (Tiffany), Amy Wattles Shooman (Eric), and four step-grandchildren Robert Vermylen (Arlene), Nancy Vermylen Thornton (Matthew), Sarah Vermylen Trust (Robert) and Paul Vermylen III (Sarah), as well as by 14 great-grandchildren – Madisyn Wattles; Preston and Aleah Wattles; Hunter and Hayden Shooman; Emma, Kate Libby and Jack Vermylen; Ned, George and Charlie Thornton; Collin and Josie Trust. As well as her beloved calico kitty Catherine.
Martha was a life-long animal lover, conservationist, lover of the symphony, supporter of the arts, and ardent and competitive sports fan--especially the Detroit Tigers and Michigan Wolverines. She was a member of the DAR, and American Wing of the Detroit Institute of Arts. Most importantly, she was a collector of friends, putting everyone’s thoughts and concerns before her own. She will be buried in Hart MI Cemetery in a private ceremony. Celebrations of her life will take place in Grand Rapids (Cook Valley Retirement community), as well as in Pentwater.
Donations in Martha’s name can be made to: Alliance for the Great Lakes (Chicago, IL); L.A.S.S.I. (Local Animal Shelter Support, Inc. in Pentwater MI); Oceana County Animal Friends (Pentwater, MI).