Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

Remembering the servicemembers who died in the service of their country.

Marine Lance Cpl. Jonathan W. Collins

19, of Crystal Lake, Illinois.
Collins died due to enemy action in Al Anbar Province, Iraq. He was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, California. Died on August 8, 2004.

Please send information, photos, and corrections for Marine Lance Cpl. Jonathan W. Collins.


Contributions to the Families of the Fallen


Leave a message in memory of this servicemember, and/or to the loved ones left behind.

Please report inappropriate messages

"We ran in your honor today Jon with wear blue: run to remember Fort Mill-Meet up. Your name was called out for all to hear. wear blue to remember The Fallen, The Fighting & The Families"
Catherine of Fort Mill, SC 29708

"Even though I never met my cousin I still miss him a lot"
cousin of st. charles

"I still come here to say "hi" from time to time, even though we talk throughout the year. Love and miss you!"
Karen of Novi, MI

"I still think of you every day, and Collins family, my heart goes out to you always. Jon you impacted my life and my family's lives in the brief time we knew you, we talk about you and remember you."

"Missing you today. It's just that simple...missing you today."
Karen of Novi, MI

"Always in our prayers. Your sacrifice and the sacrifice of all serving our country and your families sacrifices will never be forgotten. Will we ever see Peace on Earth? God Bless."
The Carson's of Collegeville PA

"Mrs. Collins I am a veteran from Lebanon and Libya and I know the feeling of losing a son or anyone thru war, I wrote the Whitehouse on your behalf and I know many other Vets and Active Duty member has done the exact same. May God Bless you and your family be strong for you son and other members of the US Armed Forces."
Isaac Ladson Sr of Winter Garden, FL

"God Bless you"
Shellie Graham of Greencastle, IN

I smiled thinking of you today. I miss you dearly. Remembering your smile makes my days brighter. If only I could share a laugh with you one more time. Until I see you again...
Karen of Novi, MI

"Happy 28th birthday sweet boy. Just miss you so terribly. Can't imagine how wonderful all of these New Year's birthday's would have been for you. We continue to honor you and remember all you were to us and those you touched. Love you my sweet and beautiful son."

"We honor your sacrifice today and every day. Thank you is just not enough.
Memorial Day 2012"
The Carson Family of Collegeville, Pa

"Thinking of you today and every day. I feel you around sometimes...thank you for being there. Love and miss you!"
Karen of Novi, MI

"I think about you every day, and have the happiest memories of you. I cherish every one."

"Missing you..."

""And I'm dreaming of a place
Where I could see your face
And I think my brush would take me there
But only...
If I were a painter
And could paint a memory" - Norah Jones"

"I will never forget you John"
Jeremy Kane of Crystal Lake IL

"Seven years today. You are heavy in my heart. Always on my mind...

xoxo, Karen"
Karen of Novi, MI

Thinking of you and missing you...as always...wish you were here today.

Dear Jon's family,
My prayers and thoughts are with you every night. Jon was a wonderful person...someone to be so proud of...he is deeply missed.
xoxo, Karen"
Karen of Novi, MI

"I've passed you. Doesnt seem right.

Don't worry giving mom and dad hell for you.

Love you and miss you everyday."

"Jon and family,

I was thinking about Memorial Day today and all the Marines I have seen give their lives for what their country asked them to do. I could not help but think about you and what we endured in Ramadi, Iraq and what your family has endured since.
I know I directly benefited from your sacrifice as you stood watch over Route Michigan. Thank you.
Having served several combat tours since then and seeing more fallen Marines, I know you are in good company in a Valhalla-like place.

Time is not quite the healer I thought it would be.

Semper Fidelis."
Major Rob Weiler of Camp Pendleton, CA

"I miss you. I think we would have had so much fun together at this time in our lives. It sucks when I meet people and my first thought is still... you should meet my funny life-loving brother. And then I remember they can never meet you.

It still hurts every time."

"Hey Jon, you're always with me in the back of my mind but especially today. YOU made this possible and it is bitter sweet. My heart still aches, but I know you never doubted what you were doing or how you were doing it. Until we meet again, you love you man, and rest in peace."
Mark Cryer 2/4 2nd Platoon 04-07 of Mark_Cryer@baylor.edu

"Jonathan, finally Osama Bin Laden has been killed. So much pain from this man, and the course our country decided to take. That course took your life. I hope somehow you know this has happened. This man is in a hell that only someone like Hitler would know. It's hard to believe this man could have brought me so much pain, that his choice would have led to your loss. Life is so complicated, I wish I could make sense of all of this. I wish this could give me some closure....it just can't. Missing you so much each and every day. All My Love..Mom"

"To the family of:Jonathan W.Collins
I am so sorry for the loss of your love one. My heart cries out for you in your grief and you have my thoughts and prayers. He died a hero defending freedom. May you have the peace and understanding that only comes from God. Prayerfully we will all meet in Heaven one day where we will rest in the arms of Jesus. If you need prayer or need someone to talk to, please call or write my pastor: Rev. John Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd., Covington, GA 30016. (770)787-1015.
Your friend in Jesus Christ, Polly Ballew Covington,Ga"3-27-11"

""Jon, Hey bud, Haven't been on here in a while, but not a day goes by that I dont think about you. Im expecting a child in September, if its a boy im hoping to name him after you, I am about to graduate from Ohio State too, life seems useless at times when I see pictures of you. I saw the foundation that has been created in your name and im very proud to have known you and served with you. I can't believe it has been this long, but it seems like yesterday we were goofing off in San Diego. I miss you a lot and can't wait to see you someday. love ya bro.

p.s if someone from the Collins family could email me, I would really like to visit Jon this summer.
Thank you very much and god bless."
Johnny D of Columbus, OH

"Hey Jon. It has been a few years since I wrote on here last. You have been on my mind recently. I am now an officer in the Marines and I am about to graduate IOC. I went to Bethesda today to bs with the Marines from 3/5 who were in Sangin, and I could not help but think of you. So when I got home I looked you up and I didn't realize this before but you were with 2/4. I thought that this was kind of weird because one of my best friends from MI, who is a Lcpl, is in 2/4 right now and I'll be reporting at the end of April to 2/4. I know I went the dark side route but I will do my best to make you proud of me and not let down my Marines and bring them home. I miss you brother. Keep an eye out for me."
John of Livonia, MI/Quantico, VA

"I miss you so much today, Jon. I miss you every day. You are always in my heart."
Karen of Novi, MI

"LIfe is so big without you."

"Made it fourteen city blocks without breathing
Light breaks from the left and hits between the buildings
Stoplights change their name from green to red to green again
Love has its critics but they never keep many friends

It's alright, this could be a rough night
So hold tight, this is not a fair fight

He up and died and left you in a fall you can not forget
You were too young, you said "Not yet, not yet, not yet."
That year the cherries choked from pretty pink to red to brown
You looked around but he was nowhere to be found

It's alright, this could be a rough night
So hold tight, this is not a fair fight

It's alright, this will be a rough night
So hold tight, this is not a fair fight"

"Another birthday without you. I tell people to celebrate every single birthday, because it means another year of living. We remember every year of your life because it was so incredibly special. Happy Birthday to you my sweet and beautiful son...."
Love, Mom

"They say your 3 week old nephew sleeps all the time...

...I have a feeling it's because he still sees you when he closes his eyes..."

"I work at the Build A Bear Workshop in Iowa. Had a guest that came in to our store today to donate $25 for the "A Message From the Heart". I wasn't aware of this opportunity but told him I would find out and get the information to him. He gave me the web site he found "jonathancollins.org. He lost a friend, who also gave his life for our country and wants to made this happen. This man did not have wife or kids but he saw the pain their family suffers. I have read and read and looked at the videos and am so moved by all of it. I work for an awesome company and in my 8 years with them, have helped many servicemen and woman or their families...proud to me an American because of these great people. I think your son was very blessed to have the family he had. Can see he blessed your life as well. My sister lost a son, my nephew and a grandson, my great nephew and I lost another nephew...none due to military but I have suffered the loss and seen what it does to the families left behind to grieve. How it has affected their children left behind to question why. God bless you and your son Jon. I have been touched tonight and will carry this message to others and share this website. Thank you for all you do and have done!"
Bonny Borders of Coralville, Iowa

I still can't believe you are gone. Your memory and spirit truly lives on in everyone you have touched. I will never forget the day I found out, it still doesn't seem real. You were such a special person. You made everyone laugh! I pray for your family and think of them often. I know we will see each other again some day! Merry Christmas!"
Kelly of Livonia, MI

"Happy Birthday Marine! I know I'm a little late. 235!!!! You're getting up there! I was doing a Color Guard at a Marine Corps Ball last week...I thought of you. I always have your challenge coin with me...I often pull it out and just look at it, thinking of how strong and brave you are. You keep me going! Thank you for your inspiration Jonathan!"
Rachel of Crystal Lake (Currently Champaign)

"‎"If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together.. there is something you must always remember. you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. but the most important thing is, even if we're apart.. i'll always be with you.”"

""Your eyes shined bright
When you were a kid
Your sisters loved you
And all that you did

Big brother, big brother
Don't worry a bit
Your flame has not faded
Since the day it was lit

Your life
Was joy
Your mama's
Only boy
And when the skies
Are blue
Big brother
They're blue for you

We'll smile like pictures
Of you as a boy
Long before you retired
To heavenly joy"

love you"

"At night when the stars light up my room
I sit by myself
Talking to the Moon
Trying to get to you
In hopes you're on the other side
Talking to me too"

"Hey John Collins,

I always called you by your full name. I don't know why, just did. I think about you CONSTANTLY. I tell friends about how hilarious you were, and how you were one of my favorite classmates. Remember that play about the dining room table? I loved the skit with you and Dimitry (was that his name? It was so long ago now). I watch a little boy named Yahonatan & he reminds me a lot of you. If God sees fit to bless me with a son, I'm going to name him after you, cause I hope he'll be just as sweet, funny, crazy, and vibrant as you were/are. It's so not fair you're no longer here."
Morgan of Crystal Lake, IL

"please john..please"

"A shooting star across the sky
You kiss the earth and say goodbye

Only the good die young
Only the good die young
Crashing into the sun
Only the good die young

They'll always be here"

"We're having another boy. His name also carries your memory. Please keep him safe. Although Bryden has never met you, he knows about you. We'll make sure you're never forgotten."
Catherine of Chicago, IL

"At Camp Pendelton today as we get ready for the Build A Bear event in your honor. So many memories of you. Walked Oceanside today and I can remember when we went with you and Brad as you got haircuts and bought things you would need for your deployment. You were so carefree and happy. I wish I would have known I would not see you again. Maybe I could have given you one more hug, one more goodbye. Six years and it feels like yesterday. How deeply you are missed, every minute of everyday. I love you my dear son..."

""miss you and love you..im sorry your not here.""

"I can't believe it has been six years...you're missed everyday"

I have attempted to write you here so many times. It never seems to come out right. I talk to you often...very often. Lately, I miss you a lot and I can't get you of my mind. When I go to Chicago to visit my sister, I always try to see you too. I wish I would have had one more time to tell you how much you made me and everyone around you smile. I know you know and hear me, but I wish I could see your face again. Every year when August hits, it gets harder. I remember the times we used to spend playing with your younger sisters or talking about anything, everything! I really miss you. I am honored and proud to have known you and been part of your life. I talk to you so often now, but this helps a little to write you. I miss you, I love you, and I am always thinking of you.
<3 Karen"
Karen of Novi, Michigan

"Today is hard. Actually, each birthday since I turned 19 has been hard. How can I live another year older then you ever got to be? Especially to be reaching the age of 21 - such a milestone year. It's an experience you never got and the guilt kills me. I feel guilty for being older then you and I hope you can forgive me for it.

I'll miss you tonight and tomorrow while I'm celebrating. I wish so much you could be here - life isn't as fun without you in it. I can only imagine the joy you would bring to me right now and the laughter you would add to tonight.

I miss you."

"Devon graduated, hard to believe she is 18. Brandon and Catherine are expecting again, another baby you will miss. Lauren will head to Spain for school, how much she could share with you. Your grandparents married 50 years, your absence was glaring. So much life still going on, all of it without you. We go on, but you are always, always, missing. Love you, love you, love you..."

"Thanks again man. Holiday's like today are tough for your family and friends, but we know that you're with us all the time. What you did will never be forgotten buddy. We miss you."

"Heavy in my heart today and every day, Jon, cheers."

"Always in our prayers. Never to be forgotten. Thank you, brave man."
The Carson's of Collegeville, PA

"I'm having such a hard time missing you right now. I feel so guilty living the life you can't. The guilt is unbearable sometimes. I'm sorry."

"I think of you often. Little things like riding the train, where i spoke to you on the phone for the last time. These last few months have been very hard on me for reasons i can't really figure out. But i know you're there. I miss you more than i could ever possible express on a web page or through writing. I always thought that the pain of losing you would taper off as time went on. Just the opposite. The longer i live, the more i experience, the more it hurts, the more i miss you. Rest easy, i'll see you soon."

"The guilt of being happy and living the life you should be living is sometimes too overwhelming for words, only songs will do:

Happiness feels a lot like sorrow
Let it be, you can't make it come or go
But you are gone, not for good but for now
Gone for now, feels a lot like gone for good.

Happiness is a firecracker sitting on my headboard
Happiness was never mine to hold
Careful child, light the fuse and get away
'Cause happiness throws a shower of sparks

Happiness damn near destroys you
Breaks your faith to pieces on the floor
So you tell yourself, that's enough for now
Happiness has a violent roar."

"Looked at some pictures of you today from when you were in Iraq. It was so great to see you smiling. Good Lord how I miss you...."

"Joshua - Lifehouse

the air has never felt so warm
the sky has never looked this way before
there's nothing comforting in change
I can't seem to find any peace in this confusion

I can't help my mind from racing
and my heart is beating faster than ever before
tell me is this really happening
I cannot tell if I am dreaming

last night
I saw you standing in the moonlight
and you took my hand and we walked
beside the river
and you said
don't be afraid, be strong
I'm with you

I'm climbing on top of my doubt
don't let this fear
get the best of me
cause I find my confidence in you
and I find my hope
when I lose control

last night
I saw you standing in the moonlight
and you took my hand and we walked
beside the river
and you said
don't be afraid, be strong
I'm with you

last night
I saw you standing in the moonlight
and you took my hand and we walked
beside the river
and you said
don't be afraid

and last night
I saw you dancing in the moonlight
and you took my hand and we walked
beside the river
and you said
don't be afraid, be strong
I'm with you
I'm with you
I'm with you
I'm with you"

"Happy Birthday. I was remembering today so many of your birthday memories. I was thinking about what you would be like today. I know you would like the IPhone, you would be happy that I actually answer my cell phone now. You would be so proud of your sisters, they have turned out to be such special women. Lauren has overcome so many of her fears and accomplished some really great things. Devon is blossoming into a replica of you, your same wit and humor. They have both missed having you to call for advice, to talk with you about what is happening in their life. You were always such a wonderful brother, taking them for ice cream to a movie or bowling. And you would be so proud of how they have taken care of your father and me. They are so aware of the days that would be hard for us, your birthday, our birthday's, mother's day, father's day, Christmas. Their always there for a quick hug or an "I love you". I know if you could have asked one thing of them it would have been to take care of us because you would have known how hard it would be for your Dad and I to loose you. You can be so proud of them for how they have stepped up for you and taken care of that. So many wonderful things for you to be proud of, your family has not let you down. You live in us everyday and we remember you and laugh with you, you have in so many ways never left us. Hope you have a party in heaven, knowing you that goes without saying. Love you with all my heart"

"Hard to believe you would be 25. I see you in so many places, so many moments. I wish I could see you in a dream, just one would be so nice. I miss you."
All my love, Mom

"merry christmas and a happy early birthday, we are getting pretty old huh..."

"Miss you buddy. Writing a speech about a hero and only had one come to mind. Hope you're finally getting to swim in that Tangerine Speedo and I'm sure that the plastic snowman are scared to come around. See you soon buddy... see you soon."

"I miss you."

"Was it a boy? Or was it a girl? We'll never know, but you will. Please keep him or her safe and let him know how much we would have loved her. Let her know everything will be okay."

"Dear Johnathan,
I am sitting here in my dorm room typing a paper. There was a ceremony for you about a month ago at South and I have the program sheet posted to my bullitan board and I often think about you. Though I only remember you when i was at St. Thomas and I always looked up to you and your family. I started an organization at my university in support of our troops and I always think back to you and your sacrifce. I wish that I could sit down and talk to you. Your mom and dad blessed me with your challange coin after organizing a veterans memorial at PR. They came and spoke. They are so proud of you; it is so beautiful to see. But I wanted to tell you how much your coin means to me. I carry it around with me 24/7. It is in my University of Illinois Id pouch and I never let it out of my sight. When your parents gave it to me I never knew how much strength it would bring me. When things are tough I just take it out and look at it for a while, remembering how dedicated you were to this country, the corps, and your friends and family. I think of you and it makes me stronger. There will be times where I am just walking around campus and if I find myself in not the safest sitatation I palm your coin and it gives me confidence. It has become such a significant part of my daily life and sometimes when I take it out people ask what it is. And then I get to talk about you, and your life puts smiles on their faces and they say that they wish they could have met you. Thank you so much for the sacrfices you made. You and your family are in my prayers."
Love Always, Rachel of Crystal Lake IL

"I love you and miss you. The years just can't erase the "'missing of you""

"Give Patrick a hug for us and welcome him. He is happy now, but we miss him."

"I can tell when she is thinking about you. Even here, in a room where everyone is laughing, her face is distant and her thoughts are to you. This song is from me to her when I know she is thinking of you:

Staring right back in the face
A memory can't be erased
I know, because you tried
Start to feel the emptiness
And everything you're gonna miss
You know, that you can't hide

All this time is passing by
I think it's time to just move on

When you come back down
If you land on your feet
I hope you find a way to make it back to me
When you come around
I'll be there for you
Don't have to be alone with what you're going through

Start to breathe and fake a smile
It's all the same after a while
I know, that you are tired
Carrying the ones you lost
A picture frame with all the thoughts
I know, you hold inside

I hope that you can find your way back
To the place where you belong

When you come back down
If you land on your feet
I hope you find a way to make it back to me
When you come around
I'll be there for you
Don't have to be alone with what you're going through

You're coming back down
You say you feel lost can I help you find it
When you come around
From time to time we all are blinded
You're coming back down
You don't have to tell me what you're feeling
I know what you're going through
I won't be the one that lets go of you

I think it's time to just move on

When you come back down
If you land on your feet
I hope you find a way to make it back to me
When you come around
I'll be there for you
Don't have to be alone with what you're going through

When you come back down
If you land on your feet
I hope you find a way to make it back to me
When you come around
I'll be there for you
Don't have to be alone with what you're going through"

"Say hello to Pat for us."

"It still amazes me that I still can't wrap my head around the fact that you are gone. Sometimes I forget and go to call u or think of something I need to ask you or see a movie I know you love. The hardest part is remembering that I forgot you were gone."

"Five years, so much life that you have missed. We remembered you once again with time spent together. Your family loves you so and your life is alive in our memories of you. We will never let your legacy be forgotten. We enjoyed your favorite meal, pizza and a coke, and every laugh we shared was a reminder of the love and life that is you."

"There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. A high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.

Love You John"

"I haven't written anything here until now but check it often. I came across a picture of you today and remembering the moment I found about about your passing still takes my breath away the same way. I have a Guinness for you every year on your birthday and just hope that you know what impression you made on me. The world is a brighter place even with just the memory of you and I always find that I remind myself to see the world with a twist of humor like you seemed to do effortlessly. I want your family to know that you live on in the stories I and I'm sure many others share with other people. It is still surreal to me that you aren't here but I think I'm coming to find out that the amount of people keeping the memory of you alive will always make it feel like you carry on. I am so proud of your family and the amazing legacy they've created for you that is so deserved, so true, and so loved."

"My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Jon, thank you so much for everything you have done for our country. You bravery will be always remembered, and appreciated. God Bless The Collins family. rest in peace marine."
Katie of Crystal Lake

"miss you..love you xoxo"

"On this Memorial Day we remember with pride your sacrifice. We miss you and love you. I hope you know that you were remembered and honored today. You are our pride and joy, and we miss you every minute of every day. Thank you for your courage my beautiful, sweet, son"

"Jon, You will never be forgotten. Prayers and thoughts are with your family. We miss you Collin's family and hope you are well!"
The Carson's of Collegeville, PA

"It's amazing how 4 and a half years later...people still write on this page. No one has any idea the comfort that can bring. You are not alone.

"Don't wake me because I'm dreaming of angels on the moon, where everyone you know never leaves too soon.""

""I never new john judging that i was just a little kid when he honorably passed." I went to St.Geralds and when your grandmother would go up and talk about you i never thought of any importance. But now that i am older i understand what you must of meant to your family and friends. And I am truly greatful for your sacrifice."
Jim Beck of Oak Lawn, IL/USA

"I knew Jon peripherally in high school. The memory I have of him is a warm, smiling, kind face. Though I didn't know him well, I always thought very highly of him and always thought he was one of those people who had a good soul, who wore it on their sleeves proudly.

To his family, I send you my condolences and would like to say thank you for sharing such a joyful person with this world."
Georgie of New York, NY

"One of those days where the missing you is just hard. I miss you, miss you, miss you..."

"From Where You Are by Lifehouse

So far away from where you are
These miles have torn us worlds apart
And I miss you
Yeah, I miss you
So far away from where you are
Standing underneath the stars
And I wish you were here

I miss the years that were erased
I miss the way the sunshine would light up your face
I miss all the little things I never thought that they’d mean everything to me
Yeah, I miss you
And I wish you were here

I feel the beating of your heart
I see the shadows of your face
Just know that wherever you are
Yeah, I miss you
And I wish you were here

I miss the years that were erased
I miss the way the sunshine would light up your face
I miss all the little things
I never thought that they’d mean everything to me
Yeah, I miss you
And I wish you were here

So far away from where you are
These miles have torn us worlds apart
And I miss you
Yeah, I miss you
And I wish you were here"

"Happy 24th birthday! I can only imagine how handsome you would be..."

"Another Christmas missing you. We remembered you with laughter and stories..you gave us so much material. The things you did, the stories you created, all the memories that we have...how lucky we are to have them. How lucky we are that we can remember you and smile, even through tears of sadness from the missing of you. Now your birthday, such a hard day. Thank you for the son that you were, and the special life that you lived. I love you and grow more proud of you with every breath I take. I love you my son."

"Merry Christmas Jon! I hope that they are playing some good dancing music for your dancing shoes this Christmas."
Rachelle Calacsan

"Seek me, call me
I'll be waiting

This distance, this dissolution
I cling to memories while falling
Sleep brings release, and the hope of a new day
Waking the misery of being without you

Surrender, I give in
Another moment is another eternity

(Seek me) For comfort, (Call me) For solace
(I'll be waiting) For the end of my broken heart
(Seek me) Completion, (Call me) I'll be waiting
(I'll be waiting) For the end of my broken heart

You know me, you know me all too well
My only desire - to bridge our division

In sorrow I speak your name
And my voice mirrors my torment

(Seek me) For comfort, (Call me) For solace
(I'll be waiting) For the end of my broken heart
(Seek me) Completion, (Call me) I'll be waiting
(I'll be waiting) For the end of my broken heart

Am I breathing?
My strength fails me
Your picture, a bitter memory

For comfort, for solace
(Seek me) For comfort, (Call me) For solace
(I'll be waiting) For the end of my broken heart
(Seek me) Completion, (Call me) I'll be waiting
(I'll be waiting) For the end of my broken heart

-The End Of Heartache by Killswitch Engage"

""Everything will be okay, we'll meet again one day. I'll shine on for everyone."

If I could see you now, I'm sure this is what you would say."

"Watch over me. Keep me safe. Help me make it home every day from now on. What i do is a dangerous job. Be my angel."

"I pray for you and your family often. You will never be forgotten ~¢¾"

"When Brandon and I started dating, he wouldn't stop talking about you. He eventually brought in your video for us to watch. I was taken aback by your humble personality. I was the 7th child out of 8. Although my parents lost 4 children, it happened before I was even born. So I never got to meet them. When I saw your video, it brought back hope of what it's like to know my siblings. It's a feeling I'll never get to experience. By being a part of your family, I get to feel their grief, pride and happiness. Jonathan, you ARE one of my lost brothers."
Catherine of Chicago, IL


"collins, l iove you and miss you man. think about you every day.


"Well, we made it through another anniversary. Your family was together, together in their sadness of missing you, together in remembering the joy that was your life. But with each year, I know with more and more certainty that you are not gone. I absolutely know it with all of my heart. All of the times you have come to me in my dreams you have tried to tell me that. Your spirit is too strong for it to just be gone. So through this pain I have developed this peace, because I no longer fear you are gone forever. You are waiting for me, but you are still living with me. I still see your face so clearly at so many different times in your life. I see the shape of your hands, the curves of your face, I see you, everyday, in so many parts of my life. I love you my sweet and beautiful boy."

"i miss you...i miss you so much"

"I hate today. I hate every minute of it and I hate the days that will follow today. They all bring me back to that afternoon 4 years ago when my world stopped and I forgot how to breathe. I miss you so much, even more know that I'm old enough to know the life you should have been living. It's not fair that I can live it now, you should have lived it first and I should have followed in your footsteps. That's the way it should have been. That's the way it was supposed to be. I love you, hope you are having a fun time...where ever you are..."

"Almost 4 years. Almost the worst day of the year. I'll be out to visit you on Friday. I haven't been out in awhile and im sorry for that. I'll see you on Friday, I'll bring you a Coke. We'll talk. love ya brother"

"So many things to say, so many words to be used, but it is all said in "I miss you""

"I watch your video every year on your birthday and times in between, I think about how you were the kindness person I've ever had the privilege of knowing! Your smile lit up a room.I think about you from time to time, like this weekend when I was cleaning out my entertainment center and on top was your video, I popped it in to watch, I think I must have watched it too many times, because it skips now :( I pray for your family everyday, for the strength that is needed to carry on when someone so special is lost. I was glad to have known you the time that I did...your missed"

"July 1, 2008
To the family of Lance Cpl. Jonathan W. Collins:
Jonathan gave the ultimate sacrifice and will be held in the hearts of Americans forever. I cannot and will not let our fallen heroes be forgotten. My deepest sympathy to you. "Some gave all."
Peggy Childers
"Don't Let The Memory Of Them Drift Away"
Peggy Childers of Carson City, NV

"There is not a day that I don't stop and look at your picture and think why did this have to happen? I miss you so much. When will my heart stop aching? When will I fully be able to breathe? You were so beautiful....I love you."

"Jon, well i was going through some of my pictures and i found some of me and you that really made me laugh this morning. One was of us being smart *'s and cleaning the floors with tooth brushs.haha Man I do miss those days. The other I found was when we got our first tattoo's in SD. I remember that your family was comming to your uncle marks for a weekend that summer and you asked me to come meet them but i was unable to make it. I regret everyday now not making a little more effort to get the chance to meet them. I really miss you and i hate the fact that we got split up to go to different units and I was not there for you. i should of been there and i am sorry. I love ya man, Ill see you later."
Johnny of Columbus, OH

"I really miss you a lot. Not a day goes by that I don't think about you. Please visit me in my dream tonight, life's been hard and I could use your smile."

"Every night when i put Bryden to sleep i tell him "If you see your uncle, tell him i said hi." I know your his angel, i know your keeping him safe. He is starting to act like us, no fear. Keep a close eye on him, and introduce yourself in his dreams. Love you, miss you, see you soon"

"We honor your heroic life here on earth. We pray that you will take care of your family from Heaven. Remembered on this Memorial Day 2008"
The Carson's of Collegeville, PA

"Dear Jack and Angel, I was just thinking of you today and wondering how you were doing? I had some time so I searched the internet to look for some way to contact you. I came upon this website and I began to read all the messages. It just broke my heart to read all of them, and to know that time does not seem to heal like everyone says. Angel, I think of us all playing together as kids and then think that both you and Scott lost your sons so very young. Yours in the war, his to cancer, both things so ugly! I e-mailed his wife, Louise the other day and she said that as time goes by, it seems like they are only missing Scotty more. God only knows and has to be the one who is carrying all of you through this. My prayers are with all of you! Please contact me if you can, I would like to see you. Leslee (lcrafty144@hotmail.com)"
Leslee Craft of McHenry, IL

"I miss you..how it can still take my breath away. Three years, 8 months..but yet only yesterday. I miss your voice, your smile, your laugh. I miss every single part of you."

"I dreamt of you one night about a year ago. In a room of linoleum floors and brown folding tables, we danced. All of us. They were all there, so many faces and limbs from so long ago. You would recognize them easily, the memories of them floating through your mind so effortlessly as your eyes scanned the room. Through bobbing heads I spotted you across the room, sitting casually on a table. The dance floor was thick with bodies and movement and heat and the song playing had no words in it. Our eyes met as I groped my way through the people and then they parted for you as you bounced off the table you had perched on. A fleeting memory of your blue tshirt at our freshman dance in high school. A quick glance at the picture someone snapped, your mouth open in surprise or maybe sarcasm, my face beet red and hair in a dated style. We danced in silence and if you said anything, the words are gone except in the lucidity of my subconscious, and that's ok. You were warm and your arms felt strong and alive. And then we all danced, and like a camera panning out for the final shot, there we all were, together again in a room with little parts of us all touching, like people are so prone to do, and we were happy. All of us."
Caitlin Hool of Livonia, MI

"To the Collins Family,

4,000 too many are now gone.

Jon went to High School with my daughter and I had the great joy of knowing the wonderful young man that was your son. Every memory I have of Jon is of his smile and how it was reflected in the faces around him. So many different times and places, but always the same smile. I can still picture him sitting in our family room telling us about his plans after graduation and how strongly he felt about going to the service.
Please know that he is still in our thoughts and that you will always be in our prayers."
Dawn DeGraf of Crystal Lake, IL

"I didn't know you...and then I saw a truck with a memorial to you on it traveling down the street. I looked you up and want to thank you for making the ultimate sacrifice for keeping us free."
Mike of Waukegan

"happy 23rd birthday. I hope you had one heck of a party in heaven..."

"happy birthday"

"Dear Aunt Angel & Uncle Jack'
You Are always in our prayers.I can remember the day when the soldiers marched to Jons grave!I can remember when my parents told me that he had died.Since then my heart has always ached for one of Jons jokes.He told the funniest jokes.I did my ofrenda on him.But Jon isn't a him nor a who he's a soldier that served this country.I can remember the last time I saw him we were all drinking Coke and eating pizza.Jons favorite meal!!I will always love himHe never leaves my heart nor do you Devon and Lauren.I will always love you!!"
Moira Collins/cousin of Jon of IL Tinley Park

"Jon, you always will be a "little slice of heaven." I miss you every day."
Caitlin Hool of Michigan

"Why is it that these holidays still are so hard? This pain is easier to live with daily now, it has just become a part of me. But these holidays, as they lead up to your birthday....just so hard. I miss you so terribly, it is always the same words that I use, but it is always the same feeling, always the same pain in my heart. We are growing and living, birthdays, holidays, graduations, but every single thing that happens happens without you. Although I know you are with us, I know your spirit is here, I still miss you. I think so often of who you were, what you would have become, what your life would be. You would soon be 23....I cannot even imagine you that age, but I know you would still be funny, handsome, loving....I miss my son."

"I showed your video to someone for the first time yesterday. I never thought I could let someone in like that. He reminds me of you though....you would like him. But somehow... I know that you already knew that.

Thanks for sending him to me."

"I had a dream about you last night and it brought a huge smile to my face. I miss you all the time! The picture of us on my birthday is always on my mirror and the black ribbon we were given is always with me. You will always have a place in my heart."
Christina DeGraf of Crystal Lake, IL


We went ot school togethr at St. Michael's together for 2 years...back in the day;)I always remember you as the guy who has always seemed to have a smile on your face. I ranomly heard about your deat through Caitlin Hool a few weeks after...may you enjoy Heaven and save a place for all of us down here. Ever since I found about your death, I find myself frequently praying for you and your family...thanks for what you did over there for all of us!"
Patty Breen of Livonia, MI

"to many problems these days....give me the strength to do whats right and hold my own....help make those important to me proud....help me through"

"Three years today. I counted down the hours and minutes that I knew you were still alive, what you were doing, the conversations you were having, and when it all must have ended. We went to church for your mass, then to the cemetary to honor you. I came home and watched some home videos, it felt so good to see you laughing again, to see those hand gestures and head movements that were so uniquely you. I miss you, every minute of every day, but I am so thankful for the life that was you, for the love that was our family...and still is. You are as much a part of us as you have always been, and as long as I have breath it will always be that way. I love you"

"Hey Jon, today has been a hard day for me... i havn't done much but sit in my office staring at old pics of us at SOI and around town in San Diego and while at your uncles at the beach. I miss you alot and not a day goes by that i don't think about you. I had a banner made today and placed it on my house below my half flown flag that reads" in loving memory of Lcpl Jon Collins USMC." i wish your family well and can not wait to see you one day. Your brother Cpl Johnny Dawson."
Johnny Dawson of Columbus, OH

"3 years have passed and I still think about you everyday..."

"Your friend Courtney put together a fund raiser at her work for your fund. All of your friends showed up. How easy it was to see your smiling face among them, your presence expected. This is when your loss is so stark, so clear, and so absolutely unbearable. I wanted to stay, but I had to leave. You should be here, with them, living the best part of your life. But you were taken too young, too early, you had so much more to do. The pain of losing you never goes away, it just becomes a part of who you are, the air that you breathe. I live in the comfort of knowing I will see you again. I love you my son"

"Last week was CLS graduation and one special young lady made a speech that I know was inspired by your spirit in her. Your sister is a wonderful person whose smile lights up a room, yet I can always tell when she is having a down day with thoughts of you still there. I am proud to know Lauren and your family. I pray you will look down upon them and get them through the hardest days so that they can continue to bring joy to others on their best days. God Bless You! God Bless all of our heroes."

"I really wish you could've been there. You would've been so proud of me. I still sleep with your shirt and I still sleep with your dog tags. I don't think that will ever change. I miss you everyday and think about you all the time. It wasn't fair that you were taken so young. I can't wait to be with you again."

"Hey Jonathan,
Its your old fire team leader, Cpl Lewis. Man, these days are getting hard sometimes. I EAS'd from the Corps back in '04, but just got back in last year. You, and a few other reasons motivated my decision to do so. I love my Corps and all the great Marines I have served with. Whenever I think about all you guys, a tear always falls. Never fails. To all that have met me, how many times have you ever seen me cry or even shed a tear in front of you? It doesnt happen often, I'll tell you that. I'm not sure, but the loss of you has hit me the hardest of all the guys from Fox; Schrage, Green, Powers, and Parker. I guess it is because I still feel responsible for you. You were my 1st Jr Marine I had in the Corps. Now, I have more than a few. There are some movies I cant watch and some activities I cant do, because it brings up too hard of memories. Its ok, but I wish I knew why I still feel like this, to this day. I still have your cross from that Oceanside memorial back in '04, saved to my phone as its backround. That will never change. I have said it time and time again; I would gladly trade places with you, if I could. You deserve to be here, amongst all of your friends and family who miss you. I should have been there for you man. Im so sorry. When it comes time for me to say to you face to face, i hope we can still shoot the *, and fill me in on what you have been up to. Still, even with a tear in my eye, I always have a smile on my face when your memory crosses my mind. 760-622-4192 and evan.lewis@usmc.mil is my contact info."
Cpl Evan Lewis of Camp Pendleton, CA

"You were an amazing person only knowing you for a couple of years i felt like i knew you so much more than that you were the brightest soul i have ever met and you brought a smile to everyone's face no matter what kind of mood you were in. Working with you at the pie was the best thing that could have happened to me and i think about you every single day. The other day i saw the drawing of you at ISU and it made me so proud of you to be up there along with all of our other soldiers who have fought for everyone in America. I will miss you every single day and I hope once again that we can meet because there is so much more of you that I would love to get to know. I'm glad you were there to make me smile when work was slow and I'm glad you were there to drive me home everytime i needed a ride. You were an amazing friend and I can't wait to see you again!!!!"
Tina of Crystal Lake

"To the Collins Family,
I never really knew Jon but I went to South with him. He was a few years older than me, but I am now attendng Illinois State University. Just recently I was in our Auditorium/Student Union and there was a tribute of portraits to all those who have passed serving for our country. I saw Jon's portrait and remembered all the good things I have heard about him. God Bless your family and all those that were close to you. You are missed."
Lindsey Warner of Crystal Lake/Bloomington-Normal, IL

"Everytime someone asks who the handsome young gent in the picture is on my bulletin board the story always lasts forever. Everytime someone new asks about you I get excited at the chance to laugh as I tell them one of the goofy things you did and of the many ways you always made me smile. I wonder if you were still here, if you would be famous, but I guess it doesnt really matter, because you are famous now, through all the amazing stories we all carry with us."
Rachelle Calacsan of Crystal Lake (currently in Champaign), IL

"May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields and,
Until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.
May you rest with the saints, because you will never be forgotten."
Zach Whalen of Boulder,Co

"I finally got to see your beautiful face in a dream last night. It's been a long time. I'm sorry that in the dreams I always end up crying to you and you are always conforting me telling me that you're alright. Even in death you are there for me. It's just that I miss you so much, please visit me again soon.
I think of you always,
i love you."

"To Jon's family:

Hi, my name is Kristin Cryer and my husband, Mark, was good friends with Jon. Mark is in 2/4 and served with Jon. He would always talk about him when he would call home and still does, they were really close. Mark considered him his best friend. I wish I could've meet him. I want you to know that Mark does think about him, I'm sure more then he lets me know. And even though I didn't know him I think about him all the time. Mark misses him alot. He was and still is very loved. From what I hear he was a good man, you should be very proud. Please if you every want to talk to Mark about anything please email me.. kristincryer@hotmail.com"
Kristin Cryer of Camp Pendleton, CA

"I miss you....so terribly"

"Bryden is sleeping. His eyes are closed tight. It's funny how his muscles twitch and make him look funny. He's beautiful man, i wish you could see him. Everyday when i see him being held by his mother, it breaks my heart that neither of them will ever get to meet you. bryden won't have that cool uncle who will let him drink when he's 16, or take him out to a movie or to the mall and make him feel like he's cool because he is not with his boring lame parents, but with his cool uncle. Everyday i make sure i hold Bryden up to your USMC photo and point out "That's your uncle, he was a great guy, but he's not here now. When you get older I'll tell you about him." And Catherine misses you to. Whenever we go to the cemetery, she breaks down and cries. She feels like she knew you. I miss you everyday. Bryden is waking up now. Please watch over him and keep him safe. I'll visit your grave as soon as i can. I love you. Take it easy brother, i'll see you soon."

"Dear Jonathan,
Though I've never met you, I hear everything about you from Courtney, Grandma Collins, and soo much more. I almost feel what your family is going through. My cousin Justin is fighting in Iraq now. I wish I had the chance to meet you. God Bless you and your family."
Kelcey Bruen (cort's friend) of Frankfort IL


Yes, they are my heroes
The Marines indeed,
They're always fighting through and through,
And yes of course for me and you.
If it weren't for them we'd have freedom never again
Yes, they are my heroes
They are "Marines the Great"
for they risk their lives to keep us safe.
And if I could, for all the Marines
I'd give back the lives to the soliders who died
So you and me would have a chance to serve them free
Then I'd thank them and hug them,
By: Courtney Collins of Frankfort, Illinois

"Dear Jonathan,
Your nephew was born yesterday....he is Bryden Jonathan. Though you are not here, I believe you knew him before he came to us. As he grows he will know you as we knew you. He will know of your laughter, your kindness, all of the antics that made you famous. I wish you were here to know him, but I know that your love surrounds him...your spirit is within all of us."
I love you son

"I miss you every second of every day..."

"To his mother,
May your brave son RIP, he gave his life for his country, a greater sacrifice one will not make. I saw you on NBC yesterday and found your love for Jonathan to be be radiating. I did not know that this brave young Marine, who sacrificed all at such an early age, was also from my home state.

To his family, may you know that my heart goes out to you, one can never understand how this loss can feel unless you experience it, and to all mothers and families of America's heroes, and these young men and women are geunuine heroes, all I can say is they will live on in our emotions, the memory of their last full measure never far from our hearts.

God Bless"
D.W. of Peoria

"I did not have the pleasure of knowing you. I saw your name on your mom's license plate when I was behind her in traffic. Sitting at that red light, it touched me. It hit me right away what her license plate signified. It opened up a piece of my heart that had not been opened in a while. I teared up, not at the loss of my brother, but at the thought that another family went through or is going through what we went through. And I thought, this mother is in front of me now. I started to wonder about you and all that your family went through. I am thankful for many things: you and your family, and I am thankful to be able to read a little bit about you on this website. Thank you so much. I just wanted to send a message of respect and recognition."
Brent Rowe of Algonquin

"We think of the grief you are feeling often. Marian and I want you to know that you are especially in our thoughts and prayers today. May God continue to help you be strong. We apreciate the supreme sacrifice Jonathon made for America. May his memory be eternal."
Tony & Marian Stavros of San Pedro, CA USA


I can't believe it's been two years since you've been gone. I still think about you all the time. You and your family are in my prayers to this day."
MS of CL, IL

"August 8, 2006
Dear Angel and Jack,
Please know that you and your family have our love and prayers, today and every day."
Barb, Robert, Chris and Jonathan Carson of Crystal Lake, IL

"Jon and The Collins Family,

I went to school with Brandon (Jon's older brother) for two years and in that time we became great friends. We started a band together, and practically did everything together. I know from the stories Brandon would tell me, he was proud of you, very proud of you. I would like to point out that these stories intrigued me and how you were gung ho about the Corps and doing everything in your power to ensure freedom for the U.S.A. When I got word of the news that you had departed this world, I sat in my room the whole day, feeling helpless. I wanted to make it to your service, but had no way of getting there. I wanted to be there for your family, Brandon, and most importantly thank a man who gave so much for this country and to ensure a person like me could live to tell about you. I'm rambling on I know but I had just talked to your brother the other day and he had told me some more stories about you. Hearing all of this made me think about ya and then I found this site. So without dragging on too much here is my Thank You for Everything! I did not know you, possibly met you once, yet I can tell how you impacted Brandon's life and that makes me feel as if I did know you. I hope you're doing okay and I know one day I will be able to shake your hand, maybe Brandon and I will even do a song for ya. Thank You."
Patrick Bright of Arcola, IL

"How is it that the hurt can still be so strong, your loss so deep? Almost two years.....feels like two days. So many words I could use to describe all that I miss, but in the end it is you, all of you. I wish the war would end and the dying would stop, but so many have joined you since you left. I am sad for so many broken hearts....at least you have peace.

I love you my son,"

"There's no one in town I know
You gave us some place to go
I never said thank you for that
I thought I might get one more chance

What would you think of me now?
So lucky, so strong, so proud
I never said thank you for that
Now I'll never have a chance

May angels lead you in
Hear you me my friends
On sleepless roads, the sleepless go
May angels lead you in

So what would you think of me now?
So lucky, so strong, so proud
I never said thank you for that
Now I'll never have a chance

May angels lead you in
Hear you me my friends
On sleepless roads the sleepless go
May angels lead you in

May angels lead you in
May angels lead you in
May angels lead you in
May angels lead you in

And if you were with me tonight
I'd sing to you just one more time
A song for a heart so big
God Couldn't let it live

May angels lead you in
Hear you me my friends
Upon sleepless roads the sleepless go
May angels lead you in

May angels lead you in
Hear you me my friends
On sleepless roads the sleepless go
May angels lead you in

On sleepless roads the sleepless go
May angels lead you in."

"Chief's coming to join you. Have fun together. The rest of us will be there soon."

"7/6/06: To the mother of Marine Lance Cpl. Jonathan W. Collins:

I did not know your son.

It is strange how the Internet guides you to places you do not expect. I came across this memorial to your son and started reading the messages posted by you and others. Your son was very much loved, admired and missed. It brought sadness to me and I had to put a face to Jonathan's name. I "Googled" his image. Seeing him reminds me of all the young service people who will not be coming back home to their families. I am sad. I hope the list of the fallen can end soon. My brother-in-law served in Desert Storm/Shield and after being out of the army a number of years, he went back in. He is now an officer leading his men in Al Anbar Province, Iraq. He left his wife & children to go back there less than 2 weeks ago.

This brings me back to your son, Jonathan.

My brother-in-law, Andrew D., is now in the same place where you lost your son. He was compelled to go back to try to help end this war in any way he can and to hopefully put an end to additional names being added to the lists of the fallen. It is possible that he now leads the service personnel who knew Jonathan.

May they all return safe.

May God bless you and those who knew your son."
Michelle D. of Whitman, MA

"Hey man,

It's Deric here, just thinking of you a whole lot these last past few days. My wife and I have your picture up in the house in a nice frame. When ever I go out to the bar I take your picture with me and we drink to you bro.

Things are different around here man. Me, Jordon, Hitt, Wiley, Williams, Conyers, Erazo are all up at 29 Palms TAD. Working with the Mojave Viper thing. IT'S HOT HERE.

Clark, Conley and everyone else is still with Fox and they are going on another MEU.

You didn't miss much in Okie man. We hated it there. Worst place on earth! You though Iraq was hot man? TRY OKINAWA! When it is 100 degrees and 100% humid outside you wish that you where back in your gear on post at the snake pit! Ha

Well man - I dunno... Just trying to get thought the Marines 1 day at a time. Nothing really exciting going on here man. Just like a normal job right now. Kinda' boreing.

You know, I tell everyone about the story when Jordon and I where in our room having a party when your family showed up. I was so embarrassed! But hey, grandma gave us some good chow and your parents understood so it helped me get overmyself.

I miss you man. You where the best roomate that I ever had man. Everyone else has been dirty, strange, basket cases or something not normal. You where the cream of the crop. And when it's my time to meet you, I'll bring some gas masks and we will start our mosh pit in our room and mosh it up together ok? And since we always just wore those things for who knows why, we will sit and talk about whats been going on with them on. Just because we are strange.

Ok man - I miss you. I love you.


P.S. I talked to your mom today, everyone is doing fine. Lauren is now gragimetated, Devon is now going to be a highschooler, your mom's still everyone's mom, and your dad is still the dude of all dudes. They send love as well."
LCpl Deric M. Dalton F 2/4 of 29 Palms, Ca USA (TAD from Camp Pen.)

"Hey man,
Just wanted to say hi, theres not a day that goes by that i don't think about you. I will never forget so help me god!
Cpl. Cryer Fox 2/4"
Mark Cryer of Camp Pendleton CA

"Devon graduated, hard to believe. But through the joy was the tears...missing you. Her thoughts were of you and your absence. We miss you every single minute of every single day...."

"I watched the flag pass by one day, It fluttered in the breeze.A young marine saluted it and then he stood at ease, I looked at him in uniform, So young, So tall, So proud. With hair cut square and eyes alert, he'd stand out in any crowd I thought how many men like him had fallen through the years. How many died on foreign soil, how many mothers' tears. How many pilots' planes shot down? How many died at sea? How many foxholes were soliders' graves? No, Freedom isn't free. I heard the sound of Taps one night, When everything was still. I listened to the bugler play, and suddenly felt a chill. I wondered how many times that Taps meant "Amen".When a flag had draped a coffin, of a brother or a friend. I thought of all the children, the mothers and the wives, of the fathers, sons, and husbands, with interrupted lives. I thought about a graveyard, at the bottom of the sea, of unmarked graves in Arlington, No,Freedom isn't free.

But most of all I thought about my cousin, Jonathan. xoxoxo"

"Hey Jon...Just a few minutes ago, my sister (remember Petra?) called me from ABC where she is interning and told me about this website where we could all leave you messages...I would have left you one sooner had I known about it! I just finished reading all the messages already on here...John's message and those from your mom touched me especially. I have so very many fond memories of you and think of you often. When you moved to IL and I came to your house in Livonia the night before you left, I knew that I would not lose touch with you forever. I know that after you left we did not talk much, but I was so happy every time I heard from you. You always called at least every year at Christmastime to thank me for the Christmas card I sent you...I miss sending those cards to you and have stopped sending them to anyone since you have been gone. It just didn't feel the same anymore because of all the people I sent cards to, you were among the very few that actually called to say thanks. I could not bear to send them anymore once I knew that one of the only people who appreciated the gesture was gone. I looked forward to hearing your voice every single year and only wish that I could have heard it more often after you left MI. I remember where I was standing (and then falling) when I got the call that angels had taken you from your earthly home. My heart sank and being there at your funeral was one of the hardest things I have done yet in my life. I want you to know that ever since the day we met I have never had a friend with such a spirit as yours. A friend so energetic and inspiring and who never failed to make me smile on the rainiest day. I remember how great a brother you always were, taking care of those little girls who have now grown up to be beautiful young women...Your parents must be so proud of you; you must be so proud of your sisters; they and your brother must be so proud of you. I want you to know that I always loved you and do love you now...It's amazing how often your name comes up in conversation and memories of you are reflected upon. I am so proud of everything you have done for me, for yourself, for your family, for your country...You are truly an amazing soul who will never be forgotten. I send you all of my love!!!!"
Jackie Canan of East Lansing, MI

"There is this new show on A&E called combat diaries, and it is the documentary about a Marine company in Iraq. I'm watching it right now, and it brings back so many memories of a few short years ago when I found myself surrounded by your family and friends in your home town. This show is such a real portrayal of what you must have been a part of and what your family must be still going through today. I think about you and your family so often, especially lately because my cousin (more like my brother though) is being deployed to Iraq in July. I worry for him already and he isn’t even gone yet. I see on this website the strength your family has demonstrated and I remember talking with your mom the day your courage and bravery was so beautifully honored and I know everything will be okay, no matter what happens. It’s hard to have that outlook but if your family can be so strong and loving I know my family can do the same. You are so incredibly missed here and I hope you are living a fantastic life looking over everyone up there in heaven. Please watch over Joe for me – I’m so scared for him to leave, but knowing you are up there to keep watch gives me a little peace. Thank you again, so much Jon -– for everything."
Chelsea of Livonia, MI

"We miss you Jonathan!!!!!

love your cousins of frankfort,IL

"Lauren went to prom today. Standing there watching her come out of the school, my thoughts were of you and how handsome you looked for your prom. I know if you were alive you would have done everything in your power to come out here, probably to surprise her, that's just the kind of brother you were. You would be so proud of her and what she has done at the school....she has kept your strong school spirit alive. She was voted onto the Junior Court, she was so excited; you would have been the first person she called.
We miss you every single minute of every single day...."
Love, Mom

"in school we are doing a project on our hero and alot of people choose you jonathon.You are a true hero!"
ryan eilert of lake in the hills,Ill

"i see you,re sign by jafrate station on route 14 and i feel very mad because i can't searve in the army"
anthony v of lith, ill

"Its been a while since I wrote on here John. But I miss you so much, I talk to you everyday, I hope you hear me. I was thinking about you a lot a couple days ago, and I had the most wonderful dream, I was walking down my stairs and my mom said look whos here, and it was you. We hugged so tightly for so long and you said to me, "Its been such a long time". I woke up and couldnt think about anything else. I hope that somehow it was you in my dream. Your face was so clear and our hug felt so real, like I actually saw you for a minute. It has been such a long time and I still miss you just as much as ever, and I will never forget our friendship and how happy you made me. Im going to Josh's wedding in a couple of weeks, and I know you would of loved to be there. We would of had so much fun, I wish you could be there with us, nothing is the same without you. ~Miss and Love you always~"
Dolan Face

"I know it has been a while, almost too long. I went to Clinton, Iowa with my family this weekend for Easter. I has such a awesome weekend hanging out with family and my cousin's new baby girl. I also had the opportunity to go to a Welcome hope party for a boy that had just returned from Afganistan. He was the nicest guy, a gentleman, warm, welcoming, halarious, friendly and so much more. Later that night after being outside we went into his house to look at his pictures and the slide show that he had made. The pictures, music, stories reminded me of you so much. I knew that if you did make it home we would be sitting there looking at your pictures, listening to your incredible stories, laughing and crying about scary and funny times. Later that night when I went home I told my mom this boy that i met (nate) was a spitting image of you. And he was I asked if i could keep in touch with him bc he does not have as many good friends as you did. he says they act funny around him now and treat him differently. I gave him a huge hug and told him i want to keep in touch with him bc i want to know all about his stories and what he is doing... spending time with this boy that reminded me of you was great! but right now i miss you more than words can say. and you will always have a huge part in my heart that no one can ever replace.
love you"
Brittany Lane of CL, IL

"Wishing you were here, every single day. Having you gone just never gets easier....."

"I am currently a Staff Sergeant in the Marines working with a Combat Engineer unit in South Bend Indiana. I work in Libertyville, Illinois when not at drill. I spent 6 months over in Iraq from January 2003 - July 2003. I was driving our company vehicle to another site the other day, when I came across a Semi-Trailer, with Lcpl Collins memorial. I was deeply touched, and looked up the tribute website. I just wanted to send my regards, as I may not know Lcpl Collins, He is still a brother to me, and I give him my upmost for his duty and service.

Semper Fi-

SSgt Kain Holland
2nd Platoon, Company B, 6th ESB
South Bend, IN"
SSgt Kain Holland of Mundelein, Illinois

"Missing you just gets harder everyday. I wonder what you would be like? Would you be the same or more grown up? What would it be like for you to be 21? Someday I hope you can answer all of my questions....."

"Angel and family,
My daughter, Emily, just directed me to this site today. I cannot imagine how it feels to have lost your child. I think of Jon when I drive by the memorials, when I drive past your neighborhood, when Emily talks about times at CLS....I think of you often. I am grateful that you have faith in God and his promise of eternity. I am sure that is what you focus on--seeing Jon again in heaven. Just know that you are in our thoughts. I pray for your strength and God's peace."
Julie Boleyn of Crystal Lake, IL

"Sometimes it feels like you are just somewhere else, visiting or taking time off. It just doesn't feel like you are "gone". I miss you...."

"so im in love with this show dancing with the stars, not something i am proud of,im sure you would make fun of it, but i cant help myself....anyways, the other night one couple danced to the song from dirty dancing, some of these people are professional ballroom dancers, and i just wanted to let you know....they had nothing on you! i think about you everytime i hear that song with a big smile!it is just one of the many wonderful moments you have left us with.i know you are still dancing up there making everyone smile!"

"I was flipping through newspaper clippings the other day that I have saved throughout the years and came across the ones about you. It got me thinking. Hope you're having a good time up there looking down on everyone."

"Missing you.....What would it be like to see you today?"

"Happy 21st birthday Jonathan. Wish you could have been here to celebrate it, but I hope you had a great party in heaven. I love you,"

"This has to be a hard day for all of your family. My thoughts and prayers are with them."
(12/25/05) of Illinois

"I am missing you, every single day....it is hard to look at my Christmas list without your name, hard to imagine what you would be asking me for, how glad you would be to be coming home from Okinawa. I can only imagine the stories you would have and the anger and hesitation to be having to go back to Iraq. Know that you are in my heart every minute of every single day.....every single minute. I love you my son....."

"I was thinking of you today, I think of you everyday actually. I miss you, I had a deam about you.....we were back in high school in the pit on our break from science and you were eating those cookies from the cafeteria...how you ate them so fast so no one else could have a bite! But you always gave in to someone... just so many things remind me of you. I've seen the memorial that downtowm CL has for you, I can't say however, that I have made it there. I want to stop everytime I drive by to look and appreciate it's meaning...but it's hard. I just want you to know that I miss you and you are always in my heart and thoughts. I envy everyone up there...they have you to brighten there day every single minute...."

"My name is Cameron Schilling. I am a college student from central Illinois. I am the first generation of my family not to serve his country. I am extremely grateful for the sacrifice you and your loved one has given for the United States. I am disappointed by the way the news media has covered this war and the deaths of our youth. The media has stopped listing the names of the soldiers killed in Iraq and people only talk about the soldiers when we reach a specific milestone in deaths. If you just started watching the news today you would not even know there is a war going on. Partisan politics have replaced coverage of our young generation who have traveled to a foreign land in the name of the United States. Whether you believe the war in Iraq is wrong, right, justified or not everyone should pay even just a little more attention to what these young men and women are sacrificing. This is what I would like to do. I want to do my part in honoring these soldiers and their memories. Along with being a college student I am also a budding artist. I draw pencil portraits of local people in my community. I want to offer a pencil portrait sketch to the immediate family of every Illinois soldier killed in Iraq. Please contact me at cameronschilling84@hotmail.com."
Cameron of Illinois

"Heard this on the radio and thought of you...

Sunny days seem to hurt the most
Wear the pain like a heavy coat
I feel you everywhere I go
See your smile, I see your face
I hear you laughing in the rain
Still can't believe your gone
It ain't fair you died to young
Like a story that had just begun
But death tore the pages all away
God knows how I miss you
All the hell that I've been through
Just knowing, no one could take your place
Sometimes I wonder, who you'd be today
Would you see the world
Would you chase your dreams
Settle down with a family
I wonder what would you name your babies
Someday's the sky's so blue
I feel like I can talk to you
And I know it might sound crazy
It ain't fair you died to young
Like a story that had just begun
But death tore the pages all away
God knows how I miss you
All the hell that I've been through
Just knowing, no one could take your place
Sometimes I wonder, who you'd be today
Sunny days seem to hurt the most
I wear the pain like a heavy coat
The only thing that gives me hope
Is I know, I'll see you again someday
Someday, someday...

(Kenny Chesney - Who You'd Be Today)"
MS of Illinois

"After reading all of the messages left on this website, I feel so proud to be an American. I can't imagine the strength, bravery, and courage he must have had. Although it breaks my heart to know that such wonderful men and women have fallen in this war, it is so comforting to know that these true American heroes are out there every day fighting to keep this country safe and free. I only wish I was lucky enough to have known him. Our country is blessed to have had him in it, even for such a devastatingly short time. God bless you all."

"I was thinking today that none of this happened, that you were coming home for Thanksgiving. I was hearing your voice saying "hey, why did you go and make all of these changes in the house, I like coming home to it the way it was". But I know you would approve and love the basement....no more dungeon. I also said your name, over and over again...it is something I miss so much, just your name off of my lips. How oh how do we go on with this heartache? Although I laugh and people wouldn't know it, I haven't had a happy day in 15 months and 11 days. I miss you terribly, but I still see you in my dreams, thank you for that. I love you my son, in my heart your heart beats still."

"I still think about you everyday and for some reason it never really feels like you're gone. I know we weren't as close as some, yet I still feel like you are watching over me...watching over all of us."

"Glenn Rivera honored you at a war memorial at Western a few weeks ago. He read your name aloud and proud and placed a flag in the ground next to 2,000 others. He is very dear to me and helped me a lot when i've missed you. He has asked so much about your life and it warms my heart to tell him about it. I am reminded every day how lucky i was to have had you in my life. i'm still struggling to understand it all. I sent an email to some of the guys you were stationed with and i had remembered some names, thanking them for everything. i wonder what it would feel like to come back from war. i miss writing you letters, it began to feel like such a normal thing. now i guess i can write to you here. this website gives me a strange comfort.

Nickie- i'm glad for you and am not surprised that you are one of the few people who still check this website. i love you."

"I had this strange urge to look through old emails from him tonight and got a chill as I read over this part of one....

"If I should die over here god forbid, I want you to know some things. I'm not different and I haven't changed- maybe on the outside but on the in I'm still the same old john you met in Mr. Pumas class almost 5 years ago. I love you with all my heart and think about you a lot. I haven't lost any piece of my personality because of what I have seen. Its only made me stronger. I would love to tell you all about this place and I will when I get back.I don't want to rush it or leave anything out. know that I love you and miss you so much take care."

damn, i miss him. i was remembering the Halloween when we all got lost in Cicero with him driving the shagin' wagin' oh those hairy legs in that cheerleading skirt!
be patient my darling."

"john you are always on our minds. you are so greatly missed. we pray for you and your family."
The Cuchna Family of Crystal Lake

"Hey Jon
I miss you so much. I still think of you everyday. There is someone in my life very important to me right now. You would love him so much. I know you would. He has been in my life for some time now, and he is the first person, out of anyone in my life right now, that I have been able to share our stories with. He is getting to know you slowly, and he is teaching me how to celebrate your life. I just wanted you to know that he wishes so much that he had the chance to know you as deeply as I did. He tells me that I am so lucky to have had a friend like you in my life, and I tell him I knew that a long time ago. I love you Jon."

"Dear the Collins Family,
I can only imagine what you all are going through still to this day and my heart goes out to all of you. Jon was a great friend and a great everything...I just hope that you all do well with and in everything you do and my deepest prayrs are going out to you and Jon.
"Rest in Peace Jon, You will be missed...""
Katie of Crystal Lake, IL

"To Jon's Mom:
I was behind you in traffic the other day. Your bumper stickers honoring your son brought me to tears. I have 2 sons of my own, and I appreciate to my very core the sacrifice your family has made for all of humanity. My prayers will include you and yours from now on."
Kim O. Bauman of Marengo, Il

"To Lcpl Collins',
I just returned from my 2nd deployment to Iraq. I did my time out in the western part of the Anbar Province. I was out there with my brother Cpl Medlin (who also just returned). I went to OCS with Brandon, and I told Brandon, before I left for this 2005 deployment, that I would keep memory and spirit of his brother with me. My bro and I wanted to make Lcpl Collins proud, since we knew he was watching. Jonathon knows there is progress being made in Iraq and he is one of the true heroes in this war. Those of us that have come home, will never let the names of our fallen Marine brothers die!!
Semper Fidelis. May you rest in peace. I pray to our God above to comfort of the Collins family with your loss 1 year ago."
Sgt Scott Medlin of Concord NC


Missing you so much. It warms my heart to read all the wonderful things that so many people have to say about you. You have touched us all, your laughter, your smile, your humor, your kindness....you, you, you. Such a unique and wonderful friend, nephew, grandson, brother, son. You were my gift.....thank you for making that gift so special. I love you...."

"jon,I wish I had met you. Josh talks so highly of you.Thank you,and bless your family"
Emmie Jordon of Kennewick,Wa.

"I cant believe it but someone no one told me that you were gone till today. The past two weeks have been some of the hardest of my life, and then Im told that someone I adored so much has been gone for a year. There are so many things I want to say about it, but it would take me all night to say them all and none of it would do all these feelings justice. I had math with you my senior year, and that was one of the best times of my life. I think I still have quotes from you in a notebook, I'd give anything to know where I put that. It just doesnt seem fair that someone so bright, and cheerful, and fun is gone. Its easy to say that someone was a good person when theyre gone, but you really were a good person, and I had really been looking to seeing you again. I hope I do still one day."
Morgan Prestage of Crystal Lake/Champaign, IL

"Jon when I heard the unfortunate news of your passing, I was caught totally off guard. I did not hear about this until a few weeks after it happened. It was towards the end of August when I got out of football camp. I call Jackie Cannon to see what she was doing, and she told me. I had the wind knocked out of me. I was in such disbelief. I would not believe that my friend from St. Mike’s was gone. Alls I could think about was all of the times we hung out, whether it was us playing football for St. Mike’s or the time when I bet that you would not kiss Jackie on the playground in 7th grade but you did, or the time when we were playing football all night in the snow outside your house on Hubbard when the falcons were in the super bowl and we would do the dirty bird every time we scored or the countless times we stayed over each others houses. It did not hit home until I saw the article in the Livonia Observer and looked you up on line. While reading the reports and the articles about you I just thought that…yep that is the Jon we all know and love. Everything that I read about you everyone says the same thing, that you were the one who made their day better by making them smile or making them laugh. And I am no different. I remember that boxing nun that you had and every time you used it I thought that it was hilarious. I remember when I saw you before you left for Illinois at a Churchill basketball game our sophomore year. It was a brief conversation and the we went our separate ways and that was the last time I saw you. There was a day when you were in town, I think it was right out of boot and a lot of the old group got together with you but I was unable to go. And I regret not seeing you for the last time. It has taken me a while to find the words to explain my feelings, but then again I was never good at these sort of things but I will try anyway. When I hear the Name Jon Collins I think of a good friend who will not stop talking to you until you smile. When I hear the name Jon Collins I think of all of the good times we had, a great son and brother because I saw how you treated your little sisters a brother, and a very brave MAN for laying down your life for all of us here and for your country. My deepest and most heart felt sympathies go out to your family and close friends and all of the people you touched. This page is proof of your character and all of the positive ways you have influenced so many different people’s lives. Again Mr. and Mrs. Collins I am truly sorry for you loss. I miss you Jon and I will see you later my friend. Until then you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers."
John Rehberg of Livonia, MI USA

"TO THE FAMILY OF LANCE CPL. JONATHAN COLLINS......Please accept my deepest sympathy on the loss of your beloved son, Jonathan. You are always in my prayers. Whenever I go to Crystal Lake I always drive through the cemetery and say a prayer for Jonathan. A few weeks ago when I was there, Mrs. Collins, you were sitting on a blanket by Jonathan's grave. I wanted to stop, but I did not want to intrude on your private moments with your son. Mr. Collins, I read your article in the NW Herald. Please know that Jonathan and all the other men and women in the military will never be forgotten. My son recently joined the Marines and leaves for boot camp in a couple of weeks. I am so proud of him, but I am also worried about what the future holds for him. My nephew is in the Army and he will be leaving for his second tour of duty in Iraq in November. My niece also served in Iraq and her husband is over there now. I proudly display my yellow ribbon on my car, as a reminder to anyone who sees it, that we all need to pray for our troops and to bring them home safe. I know my son will have to serve time in Iraq. I just pray that I never find two Marines at my door and have to hear those heartbreaking words, "We regret to inform you......." I will always keep Jonathan, your family and all of our troops in my prayers."
Coralee Sanchez of Woodstock, IL USA

"*Jon* this is the song that brings me through everyday without you...

Standing on top of the edge it feels like it's going down
Everything stays in my mind feeling in a daze on the ground
Feels like it's gonna give life's to hard to live anymore
I think I've had enough things too tough
I'm out the door

All in all it's just another day now
You're falling down
What you gonna do
Standing on top of the world tonight
No ones looking back at you

Stand tall
It's going on
It's going on
It's gonna be just fine
You're holding on
Holding on today

Things don't stop and the others announced they're moving on
Salt & tears in the minds in the mouths of a bad decision
Too late for another mistake it's bringing me down
With all your faults it isn't your fault
what's going on

All in all it's just another day now
You're falling down
What you gonna do
Standing on top of the world tonight
No ones looking back at you

Stand tall
It's going on
It's going on
It's gonna be just fine
You're holding on
Holding on today

So you lost yourself
So you lost your way
Found life through someone else
But you threw it all away

All in all it's just another day now
You're falling down
What you gonna do
Standing on top of the world tonight
No ones looking back at you

Stand tall
It's going on
It's going on
It's gonna be just fine
You're holding on
Holding on today

Times rolling on
rolling on today
It's going on
Going on today"

"To the people who were close to jonathon....
This past august 8th was particulary hard for me. we all know why. it was the day last year we all lost a friend, a brother, a neighbor, a son, a pal, a marine. as you know from my previous message, i knew jonathon pretty well while we were in the marines together. the memory of him is of happy moments we shared in the field doing marine stuff. the 1 thing that stood out about him, as you all know, was his smile and attitude. always upbeat, always smiling. the ability to make someones day was the power he had and still does today in our hearts. i miss you bro and you will never be forgotten!"
Evan Lewis of Vista, CA

"My son... one year of missing you. So much of you still so real everyday; your smile, your jokes, your laughter. Such a struggle for all of us without you. How I wish it could have turned out differently. Know that we are keeping your memory alive, your courage and your love will be shared with everyone we meet. You never leave my thoughts, you are always in my heart. Until we meet again I will forever be "Jonsmom".....I love you so"


It's been a while man..I wish I could see you one more time.. I miss you, and I almost started to cry reading some of the things that these people have said. You were a great person Jon, and I know i'll never forget you. I hope you still remember me, i'm sure you do. ::Power up!:: (mocking altered beast on Genesis). Heaven wouldn't exist without you, you make everyone smile..and everyone is proud of you. Thank you Jon for the good times, and for everything else you've done for everyone. Brando, I miss you to brotha.. you're just as tough."
Bobby Rowland of Livonia, Michigan

"To the Collins Family,
Hello I wanted to tell you how important your son has been in my life, i went to School of Infantry with him alittle over a year ago and i will never forget the memories i made with him. My self, Lcpl Collier and Jon where best friends in SOI and we used to go to Mark's (jon's uncle) in Huntington Beach every weekend. I miss him terribly and i wanted to tell you how much of a impact your son has had on my life as the lifes of many marines, You should be very proud of your son as i am. And i wish the best for you and your family on this terrible event. God bless and i know your son is keeping the gates safe."
Lcpl Dawson Johnny W of Twentynine Palms, CA

"Angel, my friend, please know that I am here for you. Today will be more difficult than most so I pray God will get you through it. With my arms around you...."
Judith of Milwaukee

"To the Collins Family, The pain of your loss is deep in my heart especially today August 8th. I never met Jonathan but everyone who has met him has said that he was the funniest and kindest person they knew. What a tribute to his parents! Your strength is an inspiration to me. Always in our prayers, The Carson's. Love ya Lauren!"
The Carson Family of Crystal Lake, IL

"To the Family of LCpl. Collins:
We have constructed a memorial to the service men and women from Wisconsin and Illinois who have died in Iraq which includes, as of 7/12/05, 112 crosses and Stars of David. We would like your permission to put Jonathan's name on one of them.
We have called our display "Arlington Midwest" and it is located in Wisconsin Dells, WI.
It is our expression of mourning for the indescribable loss you have suffered for our country.

If you would like us to do this, please email me at ArlingtonMidwest@yahoo.com.

We invite you to visit Arlington Midwest. I can send you directions and some pictures by email.

"As long as we live, they too will live;
for they are now a part of us,
as we remember them."
Marty Preston of Wisconsin Dells, WI

"I miss you, miss you, miss you....."

"you should be here"

"It's been awhile, and i've gotten another tattoo representing you, but it still does nothing to take away my pain. everyday i think of you and how, for the first time in my life, i don't have a brother. from my first memories on, you have always been there. but now you are gone. reading the messages posted on here are always hard because it reminds me of what is missing in this world. something that shouldn't be missing, something that should. almost a year has gone by, but nothing is the same, nothing is the way it should be. our lives go on with a certain emptiness. i miss you john, i miss my brother, the kid who was always beside me, building forts, climbimg trees, playing hockey, getting into trouble, making ridiculous things out of legos. i just hope you knew how proud of you i was, how much i bragged (and still brag) about you. i love you john, your older brother lvoes you and is so proud of you. please watch over me and the girls. because 3 is the wrong number for us. there should be 4. there will always be 4. good night brother. i will see you someday, and when i do....well, you know."
Brandon/John's older brother of Chicago, IL

"thank you jon for your very brave actions during a time of need for your country. thanks for serving in the marine corps, after sitting over here and seeing all the horrible actions that are still continuing in iraq and around the world. just wanted to say that because you and many others have inspired me to do what i can do to help. i think of you as a brother, i ship to parris island in 22 days. thanks brother."
cj of hendersonville, tn

"Thank you Jon for all that you have done for our country.My sisters knew you from high school and said that you were the funniest guy ever You are loved by many people and will never ever be forgotten. Devon I love you, you are one of my best friends and I will always be there for you if you ever need anything."
Grace Catrambone of Crystal Lake

"Jon i miss you alot. you dont know how much you meant to me. you know my secrets, about everything family,friends, and even my future. You told me your hopes and your dreams. I wish i could of had one last talk. One more agrument about how you were right and the reast of the world was wrong. Or one more piece of advise,or just one more hug. I still can't believe this happened. But i know that your looking down on our family and me. I still dont understand and i am looking forward to the day that you will help me to understand. And you want ot know something funny Jon, the day we found out you died we were all sad, But then Brandon remined us of somethiing that for at least a brief moment we were laughing, and it was that you weren't in heaven that you were standing outside the gates arguing with god saying thing like.. "I didn't do that. that was someone else" Then God would say "Jon i saw you do it" "No it wasnt me" lol! But i do look forward to the day when i can see you again in heaven and you there waiting for me with your big smile! I love you always and forever."
Devon \Jons sister of Crystal Lake IL

"To Jon and the Collins Family. A Haiku poem by Tom Myers.

Jonathan Collins
I did not know him at all
His sister Lauren
I know quite well
We met at workcamp last year
On the same workcrew
Soon we became friends
She said she was scared, homesick
I thought I knew why
She's with new people
And quite a long way from home
But it went deeper
Jon was somewhere else
Not at home, in great danger
Wouldn't you be scared
For someone you love?
I didn't know at workcamp
I sure wish I did
We say we get it
That we understand their pain
When we really don't
We try to be kind
But we really have no clue
All that I know is
Jonathan Collins
Serving in a distant land
Lost his life today
If he was anything
Like the Lauren that I know
Then I can picture
A great guy, cool friend
What a man he must have been
Every single day
Since I heard of Jon
I pray for him, and all touched
By such a great man
I did not know him
But I will remember him
Jonathan Collins"
Tom Myers of Southington, CT

"Jon, Thank You for all the great memories. I think everyone can agree, that you have a way to brighten everyones day. Im also very proud of you. Ive always looked up to marines as heros! And without a doubt you are a Hero. Agian I say Thank you for all the great memories"
Chris Politick of Crystal Lake, IL

"Thanx john you were great we all love u and will never forget you"
Harley of Crystal Lake ,IL

"Jonathan~ It has been on my heart to write you. Whenever I look through my yearbook I see pictures of your smiling face. You really had a way of walking into a room and lighting it up. I remember being in dramatic literature class with you and you made the class fun. You always had such a positive attitude and outlook on life. You saw the best in every situation and lived each day to the fullest. You were an honest, genuine, and caring person who got to know everyone. You always had a smile and were the most positive person I have ever met. You were such an inspiration to others. When I think of you it saddens be that such an amazing person would be taken from this earth at such a young age. I cry thinking back at my memories of you, but I know you are in heaven and would want us to smile. Life is so short we are never guaranteed a tomorrow. You lived each day to the fullest and had an impact on so many people’s lives. I thank God that I was able to know you in high school. I want to live my life like you: always being positive, loving everyone I meet, making a difference in people’s lives, and making the best of every day. “When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced...Live your life so that when you die, the world cries and you rejoice.” I miss you and I can not wait to be in heaven with you some day. God Bless you and your family!"
Tiffany of Crystal Lake, IL

"It's times like these that i miss you most
Remembering when we were so close..."

"Jon, I think about you all the time and wish you were here to make me laugh. You always could. I miss you..."

"Dear John,
wow...the last time I saw you was when you guys were driving out of your driveway on Hubbard..so long ago, about 5 years ago now? I remeber just sitting there and crying in my family room for like 2 hours straight, and I couldn't beleive you guys were gone. You were seriously like a big brother to me, your whole family was like a second family to me. I remeber when I would spend like EVERY day all day at your house, and when your parents would leave and put you in charge of us girls you would act all tough and tell us what to do, but we never took you seriously. and then I remeber that one devils night when me and lauren and devon and kelly were outside and some guys chased us and we ran into your house screaming and crying and you were there to calm us down. You were such a good big brother to Lauren and Devon and I know you cared so much for them. R.I.P."
Mollie of Livonia, Michigan

"I don't know what to say I wish I could have had more memories in high school with you, but the ones I have I will never forget. Thank you for your courage and bravery."
Lauren Cuchna of Florida

people think i'm fine and that i'm over it but i'm really not. they say wow you seem like your doing fine or how do you always walk around with a smile but they don't know that inside i'm going crazy. i talk to you all the time and i really wish you were here because i really need your advice on some stuff. i've never forgotten the times that we've had and i really wanted us to have more. i just hope that i can be more like you and i think that you are giving me some of your spirit and i wanted to thank you for that. i love you more than i ever got a chance to tell you so make sure you save me a seat up there on that big comfy couch right next to you, because we're going to have alot to talk about."

"Mr. and Mrs. Collins, I am grateful to have met you last February. I did not know Jonathan, but as with anyone who served in Iraq, the pain of your loss is deeply felt in my heart. You will forever be etched in my heart for as long as I shall live as the caring parents who gave their son. God be with you."
SGT Michelle DuPrey of Killeen, TX/USA/Vet of OIF 2004

wow it's been a long time since i was able to talk to you, too long. and now it's too late. i don't even know what made me think of you recently, this long after you've been gone, but when i got on the computer my heart led me to you and your memory. when i heard what happened i didn't want to believe it, i was preparing to leave for florida for school and it was torturing me that i wasn't able to come and pay you the respect you deserve. the last memory i have of you is at our eighth grade graduation party and you were showing off your "behind" while i was dancing with my dad trying, as you always did, to make me laugh. that's just it though you never did have to try hard to make anyone laugh, you had that gift to light up a room and make anyone feel good. you, yourself, always had a smile on your face and you were so refreshing to be around. i feel like i was cheated out of getting to know you. i only knew you for about three years in grade school, and it just wasn't enough. i feel as though a lifetime wouldn't be enough to get to know you and the kind of person you were. however, even though i only had those few short years with you, i would have been honored and felt lucky enough to even had a few days. you truly were an amazing and unforgettable person. i mean look at the impact and memory you had on me, someone you haven't even spoken to in years, but know that i do and will always miss you. i am eternally grateful for what you have done and immensly proud of the sacrifice you made. i know that you are watching over us now and continuing to spread your infectious laugh and smile to everyone you're meeting up there! (don't forget about me when i see you again someday!) and to your family, i will forever hold you in my prayers. the country gained a hero in your son and brother and he will never be forgotten. the proof is on this page and as gertrude stien once said, "silent gratitude isn't very much use to anyone". god bless you all."
Shelby Carey of Livonia, MI

"My Dear Sweet Boy,
This weekend we were in Washington, D.C. for the opening of an exhibit called "Faces of the Fallen". How hard it was to see your sweet and beautiful face among so many lost soldiers. We miss you so much, your laughter, your humor...you. But I see you in something every single day. I know where you are and I know how to reach you. I love you with all my heart."

"Hi Jonathan,

I just recently met your mom while she's training me for her departure from work. When I asked her who that proud Marine was in the picture on her shelf, she strongly said, "That is my son. He was killed last August." My heart sank and I mentioned that my husband is also a Marine who served his country from 1994-1998.

Please continue to watch over your mom, Jonathan. She is so heartbroken and yet, trying so hard to be strong in your memory. She is an amazing woman (but of course, I don't have to tell you that!).

Although we never knew you, we are proud of you and so grateful! God bless you and your family..."
*Lisa W.*, wife of Steven/USMC, and loving mom to Madison of Lake In The Hills, IL, USA


I hope Heaven's weather is perfect and God's embrace is warm. You deserve all that and more. Thank you."

""God places the heaviest burden on those who can carry it's weight"
--Reggie White
You were able to carry the heaviest of burdens without a doubt in your mind. I wish I would have known you better in highschool, maybe your love, honor, courage, and bravery would of rubbed off on me. I have so much respect for the life you lived. What may seem like a lifetime for the one's who love you the most, seems like seconds in heaven. You will be with your loved one's before you can blink. May God comfort your Soul."
Evan Finn of Crystal Lake, IL

"To Jonathan-
Well, I may be only a friend of your sister and of your family, but I miss you for them. I really wish that we would've talked back at your graduation party- I will always remember you smushing that cake into your sisters faces. Listening to your family and friends at the funeral, wake, and burial and even reading over all these entries on this website really made me feel like I somehow knew you more. The picture of you that your mom gave to me at the wake still sits on my desk and im reminded of everything you did for all of us. Thanks Jonathan. I will be the best friend that I can be to your sister and the rest of your family. See you later."

"Thank you for making me smile. Your memory lives on. Color day was on Friday, Lauren made these cool umbrella's that hung over each section of the pit. Thank you for your spirit.
The Collins Family:
I attended Jonathan's wake, funeral, and burial. He was a great friend and a role model to all. I pray for your family every night before I go to sleep. Thank you for your sacrifice. Your son was a great friend, role model, and soldier."

"I miss you so much it's undescribable. I think of you everyday, every minute. I love you, and that is all I can say for now. I love you."

"I drive past the place you were burried everyday on my way to school and I think about how I want to stop and say hi and talk to you because I miss your voice, your laugh, your smile, everything about you. But I am weak and I can't bring myself to actually drive in....I don't know why. I think about you everyday, and I hope you know that. I talk to you at night sometimes, I look at your picture on my dresser and I talk to you, I talk about you, hoping you are listening to me. I miss you soo much and you are in my thoughts always, you and your family. I always remember when we had science together..it was soo much fun...god, we joked around that whole class time, you hitting me in the head with a "brick," obviously not a real one, but all the memories of you will be cherished. This isn't goodbye because you never actually left, you are still my friend, in my heart, in my prayers and thoughts, you always will be....I'll be seeing you soon..."
Megan Marsh of Crystal Lake, IL

"JON~ you are the dffinition of "living your life to the fullest" you put all the meaning into that statement. I remember when you first moved here, and you immediately joined in with EVERYONE! Alot of people that move to a new school try to figure out where the "popular" group hangs out, you wanted to know everyone; and you did! I truly never knew how one person can change the lives of so many others. You have given me, as well as thousands of other people memories that will last our lifetimes, i have never laughed more then when you were right there saying or doing somthing! I have your picture hanging in the visor of my car and everytime i see it i can only smile, and i think of how lucky we are to have you watching over everyone here. I want to thank you for all the wonderful memories and all of the lessons that i have learned to live by, i think about you all the time Jon, and i remeber the first time you came back, we were at jeff pops house and you were so excited about the wound you had gotten! You thought it was the greatest thing in the world! You loved to be a Marine more than most people, and we all could see, and hear that when you told us of your experiances, I want to thank you for all that you have done for all of us, i love you and miss you so much.God bless you and your family; you are all in my prayers!"
~Kelley Ryan of Crystal Lake, Ill

"John,the other day I was at South and while I walked down b-hall I remembered all the times we spent walking in halls together. I looked down one door way and could still see you when you had climbed up the two walls and stayed up there for a good 10 minutes. You just sat up there between the walls and I couldn't stop laughing. I laughed again just looking at the doorway. You have left all of us with so many memories that we will never stop laughing at. I know you that you are up there still making people laugh. I was lucky enough to know you and honored to be your friend. You are forever in our hearts and will always be remembered. Thank you for the laughs. Bless our friend and our hero Johnny C."
Courtney of Crystal Lake,Il

"My dear sweet son, Valentines Day and you are gone. I remember so many wonderful memories of the cards and little gifts I gave you every year. How do I go on without you? We miss you so much and cannot get used to this life without you. I will put a little something at the cemetary tomorrow...Happy Valentines Day sweet boy..."

"Visiting your house over break reminds me of so many fun times we have had.It makes me wish that there were more to come. You are loved more than you ever knew when you were with us; by friends and family, even strangers! But, the memories I do have, i cherish them forever and can't wait to see you again some day. I'll admit it I am being selfish but I wish you were here to talk. I am going threw some tough times and there is no one i would rather talk to you right now is you. You gave me the Greatest advise ever! Love you"
Brittany Lane of Crystal Lake, IL

"To Anyone who Ever Knew Jonathon,
I worked with Jon on camp pendleton,ca. in fact, he was in my platoon, my squad, my team. i was his first fire team leader in the FMF. I will never forget the memories he gave e. he knew a lot, and gave everyhting for the service of this great country. I will gladly trade my life for his in a heartbeat if i could, because he wasn't the only friend i lost in that war. i lost between 5-7 people. men. marines. brave americans. now, i dont have them around anymore and i have to think about the memories we all shared together. if anyone ever needs to contact me, please feel free to if you want to know more about jonathon and the experiences we had in the marines. e-mail me at tat2lew@yahoo.com or call me on my cell (760)622-1759. god bless the friends and family of my friend...."
Evan Lewis of Southern California

"looking at your pictures hanging on our walls we remember how wonderful you were, how you lit up a room, how you brought a smile to our faces. It also brings tears, you know we miss you so much, its impossible not to with the impact you left, but the hardest part to accept is the fact that the people you are with right now, get the privilage of being with you. Laughing at your jokes, seeing your always smiling face, getting poked in the arm pit by you(haha). All the great things you bring to this world you are now sharing with them. We are glad you are there watching over us...like the big brother you played for many of us. I am looking forward to seeing you again. And in the mean time keep the people up there smiling like you did for us
bless our soldier Jonathan W. Collins"
Nicki of Crystal Lake, IL

"Staring out at the rain with a heavy heart
It's the end of the world in my mind
Then your voice pulls me back
Like a wake-up call

I've been looking for the answer
I couldn't see that it was right there
But now I know, what I didn't know

Because you lived and breathed
Because you made me believe in myself
When nobody else can help
Because you lived
My world...
Has twice as many stars in the sky

It's all right. I survived. I'm alive again.
'Cause of you, made it through every storm
What is life? What's the use?
If you're killing time

I'm so glad I found an angel
Someone who...
Was there when all my hopes fell
I wanna fly looking in your eyes

Because you lived... I live

Because you lived, there's a reason why
I carry on when I lose the fight
I want to give what you've given me

Because you lived and breathe
Because you made me believe in myself
When nobody else can help
Because you lived
My world...
Has everything I need to survive
Because you lived... I live, I live"
Please to not copy these anywhere..they are lyrics to a song and we do not have the copywrite

"Gone but not fogotten. The memories I hold I will hold forever. Just one person who made such a huge difference in so many lives, my life. I've never had so much fun doing absolute nonsense, getting lost on purpose, or having such a huge competitor in mario cart. I miss your smile and your crazy jokes. Memories last a life time and I forver cherrish the fact that I knew John Collins."
Crystal F of Phoenix, AZ

"I never met Jon and I really couldnt tell you anything about him. But the courage he showed in defending our freedom is something I will never forget. My prayers go out to the Collins family and friends of Jon. He was a brave man to do what he did. God Bless"
Jeff of Michigan

"John Collins lived a life others would dream of. He is a heroe to the nation. His life was a sensation. He had a great family and a great best friend. The list of his greatness may never ever end. He is loved in our hearts. He makes us all now want to do our parts. What else is there to say? He is thought about by many, each and every day. Thanks to him I now look at my country in a new way. I pray that the soldiers come home safely on their certain day. Devon you are great friend and you always know what to do. Now let me be a good friend, and be able to help you.
Always in my heart, the Collins family.
Rest in peace Jonathan Collins."

"Tommorrow, you would be heading to Puerto Rico with us. I am so proud of you and i miss your more than u know. the time you and i spent toghther, the things we did, nobody will ever know except us and those lucky/unlucky enough to be there, i am alone now, my otherside is no longer here. my balance, my second half, replaced by hollow feelings and memories. while memories are good for remembering, they won't let me touch your face, hear your jokes, or see that big toothy smile and know that you mean it. Take care brother, i will see you again, and when i do, i know you'll have thousands of people to introduce me to. but until then, save me a seat next to you at the bar, order me that cold guiness, and i'll be there in a little while."
Brandon/Jons older bro of Chicago, IL

"Despite the past, I am praying for your family during this holiday season and always. Although I only spoke to Jonathan a few times, I know how special he was to so many people. My heart goes out to you...especially Brandon! God bless you!"
Jennifer of Highland, IL

"I love my brother everyday,every month and every week. I will never stop loveing him. i think every life he touch and every person he met they will never forget him. He was such an awsome person and bro i will miss his smell his face i will miss the way he explained things with such drama. lol I miss my brother, but i know he would have wanted us to be happy, If he was here he would be livin life like there was nothing wrong like he had never left home. Live Life to the Fullest! thank you i miss you and i love you."
Devon \Jons sis of Crystal Lake IL

"I thought i lost everything, my first love. Lost love is still love, it just takes a different form. You can't see their smile or bring them food or tousle their hair or move them around the dance floor. But when those senses weaken, another heightens. Memory. Memory becomes your partner. You nuture it. You hold it. You dance with it.
Life has to end......love doesn't.
i love you more than i could ever write on this page, i hope that you can see that. I love this family and i hope this website gives you comfort knowing how thankful and heartbroken the entire country is for the loss of life from this war. i am so proud of him and proud of you for raising such a selfless, honorable, brave son.
baby- we'll keep on dancin' in my dreams....
i love you. and miss you so."
jessie of crystal lake, IL

"Dear Collins Family,
I'm sorry about what happened to your Johnathan, he's always and forever in our prayers."
Danny of Crystal Lake

"Dear Mr. and Mrs. Collins,
Our sorrow goes out to you again, especially at Christmastime, in the loss of your wonderful son Jonathan."
Angela & Roger McAlister, of Galena, IL (Aunt & Uncle of Jessie)

"Dear Mr. and Mrs. Collins,
Our sorrow goes out to you again, especially at Christmastime, in the loss of your wonderful son Jonathan."
Angela & Roger McAlister, of Galena, IL (Aunt & Uncle of Jessie)

"I miss you more everday, thank you for everything. I look forward to the day when I can see you again"

"John you died for a good reason everyone loved you so much. You will never be forgotten. Everyone is always thinking about you your family is in pain and they think about you non stop i respect very deeply for what you have done for our country i knew you but not all that much but i know you were great and you have a wonderful family just never forget anyone left behind. God Bless the USA and the collins family...Devon im always here for you when you need me!"
God Bless of Crystal Lake Illinois

"I thank all of you that you made the time to write a message to Jon and to our family. It really means alot. At this time of Chistmas it is really hard for the fallen heros familys. But i know that pray, family, and friends will help all of us get through this time. I again thank you and i know Jon does to."
Devon Collins\Jons sister of Crystal Lake IL

"A friend is someone we turn to when our spirits need a lift.A friend is someone we treasure for our friendship is a gift.A friend is someone who fills our lives with beauty, joy, and grace.And makes the whole world we live in a better and happier place. Jon, there will always be a special place in my heart for you. Miss you XOXO"
Heather K of Crystal Lake

"Jon, I think about you and thank you every day for all of the joy you brought to my life and so many others. We all miss you more than words can express. I can't wait to see you again. I love you."
Amanda Barron of Crystal Lake, IL

"Thank you, John. I love you."

"Jon, I miss you more than words can say. I know someday I'll see your smiling face again but until then I know that you are watching out for all of us you died fighting for. No one will ever make me laugh the way you always did. Miss you and love you."
Jenny of Crystal Lake, IL

"Jon you will always be remembered as a hero. We miss you."

"Like everyone has said you im sure; You were the first to brighten my day.You even made up lies and crazy stories cuz you knew id laugh and believe them. I miss you. And look Forward to the day we will meet again."
Cathy Bosco of LITH

"I know I'll see you again, whether far or soon, but I need you to know that I care and I miss you!"
T*Star of Dekalb, IL

"never forgotten"

"I look at your smiling face every day in pictures throughout my room. Wishing I could have just one more memory with you. Nothing can take away the pain of losing you, I love you and miss you; I Can't wait til the day I see your smiling face again. Keep on watching out for your family and friends! We all miss you, you have no idea!"
Blane of Crystal Lake, IL

"I miss you everyday John....

* May Gods Love Be With You, Always*"

"You will never stop making me laugh. I miss you."
Rachelle Calacsan of Crystal Lake, IL & UIUC

"i miss you."

"You are missed and loved."
JoAnne Romano of Glassboro, N.J.

"I stood on Route 14 as the funeral prosession went by. Before the prosession had even begun I looked up at the Crystal Lake Community sign. It thanked Jonathan for giving his life for our country. I'm not ashamed to say that I cried when I read it. As the presession began I looked around and noticed that nearly everyone that was near me had become overwelmed with emotion. Every boy grows up dreaming of becoming a hero. Your son died being a hero to every person in our country. He defended our country and eveyone of us, despite the fact that he didn't know us. Thank you Jonathan, you served your country, your town and your family more than any person ever has."
Matt Duwe of Crystal Lake

"I never knew Jon that well but I knew how great of a guy he was. All you had to do was stand within the same building as him to know that. Jon may be gone but the memories that he has given all of us will live an eternity. I dont know if anyone will ever be able to wear a censored sign as well as he did. He was a great American but even more importantly he was a great human being. Thank you Jon for giving your life for all of us. We miss you and we remember you."
Matt Eversman of Ames, Iowa

"To the family and friends of Lance Corporal Jonathan W. Collins,

Those we hold most dear, never truly leave us. May you find comfort in love's everlasting connection.

In the Support section of this web site you will find links to many groups that support you at this crucial time. The Marine Comfort Quilt group would be honored to send a quilt to the next of kin. There are many, loving and caring Americans from all over the United States that will never forget the sacrifice that your loved one has made for our Freedom. Please register so we can send you our "Love Stitched Together."

Proud Marine Mom and Proud Member of Marine Comfort Quilts"
Sandra Moudy of Placentia, Ca

"To The Family of Jonathan W. Collins,
My prayers go out to you in your time of need. I truely appreciate your son's sacrifice to protect our country. He will forever be remembered! May God ease your pain."
Virignia Holley, Proud Navy Wife (g_galbiso@yahoo.com) of Arlington, TX

"Nothing can explain the sorrow I felt as I prayed for John and hugged the people he knew so well. And even more, there are no words to describe how touching every moment of the wake, funeral mass, and burial were. To see the town lining the streets as we processed through was such a beautiful site, and I will never forget it. I am so sorry that you have had to experience such a painful loss - but seeing first hand how strong your family was, was very touching. As your priest said - One less at home, one more in heaven. God Bless you all."
Chelsea Lamberg of Livonia, MI

"Dear Mr. & Mrs. Collins:
May God be with you and your son for all eternity. It is such a tremendous sacrafice that Jonathan and you have made for the freedom of all Americans.
I know there are no words that can express your loss but take comfort in knowing that your son is the cornerstone of freedom and democracy.

Our son has served one tour in Iraq and will be returning again in December for another 12-18 months.

May God be with you and all the young men and women of our armed forces as they are placed in harms way."
Tim & Loretta Lane of Union, IL

"Dear Collins family,
I knew Jonny from school and he was such an awesome guy! He was always one of the kids i looked up to. i still look up to him today and he will always be my hero! i have many great memories of jon, like the plays and "dirty dancing" in Mr. CLS. You raised an incredable young man. "Jonnny, I miss you and will never 4-get you!""
Brittany Larson of Crystal Lake, IL / USA

"Dear Mr. and Mrs. Collins,

I was deeply saddened to hear of your loss. We have never met, but my daughter was in a first grade class with one of your nieces last year. We would get updates on Jonathan's service throughout the year and had heard that he had been through some close calls and seen some heavy action. It was a pleasure to bring items in to send to Jonathan and his unit because we felt a personal connection with him through your niece. A lot of prayers for Jonathan's safe return went out when we learned that his tour was almost over.

Since hearing of his sacrifice, I have read much more about Jonathan, and can only say that you must be very proud of him. I am proud of him and his service to his country."
of Atlanta, GA

"Dear Mr. and Mrs. Collins, I'm deeply sadden by the news of yours son's passing. I have a son who fought in the Iraq war at it's onset. He has since come home and has served his term in the Marines. He was attached to the 24th Expeditionary Unit out of Camp LeJeune. He soon will have a child of his own. I pray that he will not be called back. I know how hard it must be for you and your family. I cried many a tear.I still cry for every mother, father and family member who must endure this ordeal. This war has changed my son and our family forever.My heart and prayers go out to you. I shall light a candle this Sunday in honor of your son. Not because he was a great soldier but because he was your "great son". You have given the ultimate sacrifice and may God Bless you and help you through this most devastating time. I will not tell you that this is God's will, because war is not his will.God Bless you and may he help mend your broken hearts. Sincerely with all our prayers,The Dillow Family."
Robert and Tammy Dillow and Family of Lake in the Hills, IL

"Dearest Jack and Angel,
The tributes and memories of your son Jonathan speak volumes as to what kind of a young man he was. He lived more in his 19 years than many do in in 91. Exceptional parents created an exceptional son, brother and soldier.
Thank you for Jonathan. As in life, he will be loved and remembered."
Mary & Joe Alger of Crystal Lake, IL

"Dear Collins Family,
On behalf of my family which includes Lcpl Maggie Ludington, I would like to express my heart felt sympathy on the loss of your valient and loving son. I pray that God will help you carry the burden of grief and loss and that you will feel his strength at this time of need. Pleae know that we will be praying for you and for all the young men and women who are fighting for Iraq's independence from the former government. Let us all pray for a quick end to this terrible situation and for all our brave soldierS to come home safely to the loving and safe haven of their families. Thank you for your sacrifice.

"On behalf of my family and my Marine son our deepest sympathy and prayers are with you at this time of great sadness. May God bring to you the peace that only He can which surpasses all. We know that these words bring little comfort at a time like this, but know that many are out here praying for you and your family."
Elva Marquez, mother to LCPL J. Maruqez of Bolingbrook, IL

"To the Family of Lance Cpl. Jonathan W. Collins. Words will never be able to express our sincere sadness for the loss of Jonathan. Thank you for allowing my family to attend his visitation and paying our deepest respect and appreciation to you for his dedication to our country and freedom. Thank you for your comfort, too. Even though our family never met Jonathan, we feel extremely close to him and will always hold him close in our hearts and prayers. Please lean on us for anything during your time of sorrow."
David & Jan Faccone of Crystal Lake, Illinois/USA

"Thank you brave soldier for sacrificing your today for my children's safer tomorrow. You have our utmost respect and gratitude.
May G-d provide your family with comfort in their time of sorrow. May you forever rest in peace. Neither you nor your sacrifice will be forgotten.
A grateful citizen and a Proud Marine Mom,"
Lily of Wakefield MA

"The Collins Family,

I knew Jonathan when he and your family lived in Livonia, Mi. I played soccer with him and swam beside him at Churchill High School. I was deeply grieved to here about your loss. His memory will live on in the hearts and memories of those who knew him even for a short while. I will continue to pray that God will give your family both peace and comfort during this time of grieving."
Justin Boyd of Kalamazoo, Michigan

"Heartfelt sympathies to the loved ones of Jonathan W. Collins. I hope that God's love and the love of a grateful nation pull you through these dark days.
Thank you Jonathan, rest easy marine."
A proud American of Texas

"Mr. & Mrs. Collins,
I was heartbroken when I received the information regarding your son. I can't imagine the pain this must cause you. Our son's reserve unit was activated and my wife and I did a lot of praying. We've been through it before with him because he was sent to Grenada and Panama with the 82nd Airborne. I served 3 tours in Vietnam and never really thought about how much my father must have worried about me after going through the trials of World War II. But, one lession I learned was - fathers do worry - father do care - fathers do cry. I'd like to pass along a phrase that was on my high school yearbook - "God Wills It". I don't know if this phrase will help during this time of sorry but it helped us when our granddaughter died. May you find peace in the memories you have of Johathan. He has fallen but is not forgotten."
Ed & Judi Dixon of Montgomery, Illinois

"Corporal Collins, goodbye soldier and thank you. You are my hero."
Bill of Houston, Texas

"Our deepest sympathy is sent to the family and friends of Jonathan Collins. The free world owes much respect and gratitude to this patriot who chose to fight for our freedom."
The Starr Family of Glenshaw Pa USA

Please KNOW so many people share your sadness, and we are remembering your family in your loss and your deep grief. Your HERO, Jonathan will be remembered by name. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. God Bless you. Pat & Sandi Breckenridge from Montana "

"Thank you brave soldier for sacrificing your today for my children's safer tomorrow. You have our utmost respect and gratitude. May God provide your family with comfort in their time of sorrow. May you forever rest in Heavenly peace. Neither you nor your sacrifice will be forgotten. For the family/friends: May time provide happy, loving memories in place of present sorrows. Look to the sky for in the infinite meadows of Heaven the bright shining stars bloom....the forget-me-nots of angels. God bless you and thank you."
a grateful family in Phoenix, AZ

"To the family and friends of Jonathan:

We send our deepest sympathy to you in your time of pain and heartfelt loss. Jonathan was a true American hero. We have also recently loss a family member in the Iraq war. May God hold them in the palm of his hands."
The Crochet family of Chauvin, Louisiana

"God Bless! Johathan truely, is a evry special individual. Appreciate him serving our country, along side our son,to help maintain a free world. Protecting us against terrorism. Our family hearts and prays are with you. Not easy losing someone you love. We lost our son in May serving in Iraq. So I truely, understand the hurt! Jonathan,I be praying for your family!"
leonard wahl of valley stream ny

"To the family and friends of Jonathan ~
Our deepest condolences go out to all
in your time of sadness.

Jonathan will forever remain in your hearts. His spirit lives on.

God bless Jonathan ~ A true
American Hero"
The Alloway ~ Redrow Family of Pine Hill, NJ

"To Jonathan's Family and Friends:

On behalf of the Blanco-Caldas family, we send our sincerest condolences. We share the same loss ... the same pain. Our prayers are with you in this most difficult time and we thank you for your soldier's bravery and sacrifice.


The Family of Capt. Ernesto M. Blanco-Caldas, 82nd Airborne
KIA Iraq 12/28/2003.
Gloria Caldas (The Big Ern's Mom) of San Antonio, TX

"May God bless you and be with you at this time of loss. Jonathan will not be forgotten. Each day when I awake I thank him and the many others for the freedoms I have. I too lost someone very close to me in this terrible war. The pain will always be there but will lessen over time and be replaced with fond memories and peace."
Candy of Poynette, WI

"So sorry for your loss. I know he will be missed by all."
Sam Veer of Freeport, Il.

"To the family of Jonathan Collins;

Our sincerest condolences for your loss. Our family has also suffered a loss of a precious life in this battle for freedom. Jonathan is a true American hero and will always be remembered for his bravery and sacrifice he gave to his country. Our thoughts and prayers will be with you during this difficult time."
The McClain family---azquail@att.net of Tucson, AZ

"To Jonathan's Family:
There are no words to express the sorrow we feel for your loss. May God bless you and help you through this time."
Dan and Meg Manninen of San Antonio, Texas

"Thank you Jonathan Collins, you will not be forgotten. Your bravery goes beyond words. I want to express my deepest gratitude for your sacrifice. To the family and friends, my prayers and deep condolences in your loss. May God strengthen you from knowing that fellow Americans and people around the world care about you and grieve with you in your loss. God bless you all. A very appreciative fellow American,"
Leo Titus of Grayslake, Illinios

"To the family and friends of Lance Cpl. Jonathan Collins:
May God's grace be with you during your time of grief. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and we feel your loss and share in your sorrow. Bless Jonathan for the sacrifice he has made to make a better life for the rest of us."
The Ford Family of Wells, Nevada

"To the family and friends of Lance Cpl. Jonathan Collins:
I am saddened by the loss of your loved one. He will always be remembered as a hero for fighting for freedom. I hope that this website will be a source of comfort and encouragement for you during this difficult time, and in the future as you recall the memories of Jonathan, who continues to live on in your heart."
Tim Rivera of Powder Springs, Georgia

Honor them by remembering... Freedom - is their gift to us But his soul goes marching on