Reflections on the funeral services of the late Mayor D. Michael Collins

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What an honor and privilege to be chosen by the mayor and his family for Coyle Funeral Home to take care of the his funeral tribute. Never in the history of our family business or in my life have we been a part of something so unique and so memorable.

To the wonderful organizations who helped create this beautiful tribute, a heartfelt thank you! From the City of Toledo and the staff that worked directly with the mayor, to the chief of police and fire, the honor guard — everyone was professional, polished and cohesively came together to honor Mayor Collins. The University of Toledo Savage Arena was a perfect place to host the impactful memorial service so that our entire city could pay their respects and be a part of his funeral. The parish and staff of Rosary Cathedral was instrumental in the execution of the funeral mass and accommodating the many participants.

Coyle column picReflecting back on the week of caring for Mayor Collins and his family, I feel humbled and honored. I am thankful the immediate family had their time alone to grieve in private. They understood many loved him and that his funeral would involve thousands who wanted their love and prayers made known. Driving through the procession and seeing all the solemn City of Toledo workers saluting the mayor, the citizens of South Toledo, the school children, the UAW and many, many more was breathtaking. Feelings of amazement, kindness, compassion and  sadness crossed our minds as we processed to the cathedral and then to the graveside.

A quote stands out in my mind that captures the essence of D. Michael Collins:

“The man who would be mayor took as his campaign slogan ‘Collins Cares.’ It is for us, each one — whether members of city government, representatives from religious communities, teachers, students, business leaders, shop owners, laborers — now to take up that slogan and make it our own: ‘Toledo Cares.’ ” — quoted from Bishop Daniel Thomas.

How can we continue that feeling of “Toledo Cares” in our everyday lives, in our interactions with people? What can we do to be his motto: “How can I help you? What can I do for you?” without any selfish expectations for return…just love and compassion for our fellow humankind?

For more information, contact Coyle Funeral and Cremation Services at 419-865-1295 or email mcoyle-stamos@CoyleFuneralHome.com.