Tributes paid to much-loved family man and social care worker Pete Collins

Pete Collins.

Pete Collins.

First published in News Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

HE will be remembered for touching the lives of many in Southampton.

The family and friends of Pete Collins have led tributes to the father-of-two who died suddenly after a heart attack, aged 47.

The founder and ghost walker for Haunted Southampton and a social care worker, Pete, of Millbrook, lived in Southampton all his life and was described as an avid Southampton football fan who devoted his life to caring for others.

He leaves behind a widow Juliet, 49, and children Sam, 19, and Lauren, 17. They described him as having a caring nature, even from an early age when, being the youngest of seven, he began caring for his father after he suffered a stroke.

It was that which inspired Pete to work for Hampshire social services and Coxlease School for children with social difficulties in Lyndhurst.

But after watching a haunted house programme with his wife, the former Redbridge High School student became entranced by the world of the paranormal and in 2009 they set up the family business Haunted Southampton.

In five years Pete and Juliet hosted more than 60 ghost walks in Southampton venues hoping to find proof of paranormal activity.

Juliet said: “The last investigation we went on Pete was so excited because one of the images showed a footprint. He was the ideas guy and everybody loved his enthusiasm, it was infectious. We were so lucky to have him.

"I can’t believe the amount of people that have got in touch. I’m learning about him all over again through other people’s eyes.

“He was with one of the young men he cares for and that boy’s mother wrote me a card saying ‘Pete made a tremendous difference to our lives. He was as far as we were concerned the best of men'.

“Pete loved to laugh, you could hear him all through the house and he loved his kids and teasing them but he was so proud of them. We all told each other we loved each other every day.

“My daughter told me that because I’m 50 this year he was planning a trip for us to go to the Edinburgh Vaults and I would have loved that, we had so much planned.

“Within the first three weeks of us meeting we knew it was something special and at five weeks he proposed.

"We have been married for 22 years – not everybody gets to live that much.

“I used to say to him I’m a bit different now and have wrinkles but he would always tell me I was still the girl he married.

"He gave the best hugs, I used to say they were like coming home. He is the voice in my head and he was wonderful.”

Comments (6)

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11:33am Mon 7 Apr 14

Brite Spark says...

I went to Mansell with Pete, even at that young age he came across as a proper nice guy, and everyone felt calm with him around. Can't believe he's gone at 47 - bless his family.
I went to Mansell with Pete, even at that young age he came across as a proper nice guy, and everyone felt calm with him around. Can't believe he's gone at 47 - bless his family. Brite Spark
  • Score: 4

12:29pm Mon 7 Apr 14

lisa whitemore says...

It is always the good people taken too soon. Still in shock from hearing such sad news. My Thoughts are with Petes Family at this time.x
It is always the good people taken too soon. Still in shock from hearing such sad news. My Thoughts are with Petes Family at this time.x lisa whitemore
  • Score: 3

4:03pm Mon 7 Apr 14

Woolston Bird says...

Such sad news and another one taken too young ..... went to school with Pete ....... happy days .... Rest in peace xx
Such sad news and another one taken too young ..... went to school with Pete ....... happy days .... Rest in peace xx Woolston Bird
  • Score: 3

9:28pm Mon 7 Apr 14

Chris Kimber says...

Pete was the coolest uncle ever. I always wanted to be around him as a kid. He had that impressionable charismatic nature that always made me feel good when I was around him. It was like being with the coolest kid at school and them wanting to be your mate. Pete took me to my first ever football game at The Dell. This is always my most special moment shared with him. He also took my brother Ben to his first football game. Pete had a passion for boxing and it was the era when boxing was good. Tyson, Bruno & Foreman dominated the sport and Pete's house was full of boxing VHS's. These fascinated me and again all added to Pete's awesomeness. Then there was Pete the DJ who amazingly DJ'd at The Rhino. Myself and Ben have told numerous people over the years how our uncle Pete was a DJ at the trendiest club in Southampton. I hope he never wore those dodgy jumpers in his sets!

Later Pete got involved with the local scout group of which I was a part of. Everybody warmed to Pete and it was obvious how popular he was amongst the lads. Again I had great pride in telling everybody that's my uncle. Then there was his red Ford Sapphire. I'd never loved a car before I set eyes on this. Pete would let me sit on his lap as a boy and let me touch the buttons. To me this was as good as being in a spaceship. My uncle Peter had the coolest car in the world.

Later in life Pete inspired me by being involved in business. I really admired him for this and often found myself proudly telling my friends about my ghost watching uncle just as I told all the kids in scouts that the new leader was my uncle - always impressing me. His entrepreneurial spirit motivated me and I have learned a few things from him that have helped me in succeeding in my business. It was Pete who showed me how much you could learn from YouTube. This has been very helpful.

Uncle Pete - we salute you sir.
Pete was the coolest uncle ever. I always wanted to be around him as a kid. He had that impressionable charismatic nature that always made me feel good when I was around him. It was like being with the coolest kid at school and them wanting to be your mate. Pete took me to my first ever football game at The Dell. This is always my most special moment shared with him. He also took my brother Ben to his first football game. Pete had a passion for boxing and it was the era when boxing was good. Tyson, Bruno & Foreman dominated the sport and Pete's house was full of boxing VHS's. These fascinated me and again all added to Pete's awesomeness. Then there was Pete the DJ who amazingly DJ'd at The Rhino. Myself and Ben have told numerous people over the years how our uncle Pete was a DJ at the trendiest club in Southampton. I hope he never wore those dodgy jumpers in his sets! Later Pete got involved with the local scout group of which I was a part of. Everybody warmed to Pete and it was obvious how popular he was amongst the lads. Again I had great pride in telling everybody that's my uncle. Then there was his red Ford Sapphire. I'd never loved a car before I set eyes on this. Pete would let me sit on his lap as a boy and let me touch the buttons. To me this was as good as being in a spaceship. My uncle Peter had the coolest car in the world. Later in life Pete inspired me by being involved in business. I really admired him for this and often found myself proudly telling my friends about my ghost watching uncle just as I told all the kids in scouts that the new leader was my uncle - always impressing me. His entrepreneurial spirit motivated me and I have learned a few things from him that have helped me in succeeding in my business. It was Pete who showed me how much you could learn from YouTube. This has been very helpful. Uncle Pete - we salute you sir. Chris Kimber
  • Score: 20

9:15am Tue 8 Apr 14

alinoonoo says...

we were very lucky to go to the Ram Inn with Pete and his lovely wife Juliet for a sponsored haunt and although a very wet windy and freezing night with very little activity his enthusiasm was amazing the stories he told and the ability to keep on track especially when some of us (well me actually ) had a fit of the giggles made our night - the girls at the Co- Op are very shocked at the passing of an incredible man and all send their love to Juliet and the family, sleep well Pete and take care Juliet ****
we were very lucky to go to the Ram Inn with Pete and his lovely wife Juliet for a sponsored haunt and although a very wet windy and freezing night with very little activity his enthusiasm was amazing the stories he told and the ability to keep on track especially when some of us (well me actually ) had a fit of the giggles made our night - the girls at the Co- Op are very shocked at the passing of an incredible man and all send their love to Juliet and the family, sleep well Pete and take care Juliet **** alinoonoo
  • Score: 1

11:43pm Tue 8 Apr 14

JayJay2011 says...

Pete truly was the most amazing man, such a wonderful bubbly enthusiastic man with a fantastic personality, and an incredible gentle nature with it, he was always so positive about everything in life and I'm sure made everybody's day brighter just by being in it. I have been on many investigations with Pete, Juliet and the team, and I am proud to call them my friends. Pete will be sorely missed by so many, such a hugely wonderful man in every sense will leave a huge hole. Much love to Juliet and the children, and of course to his brothers and sisters and all who knew and undoubtedly loved him. Xxx
Pete truly was the most amazing man, such a wonderful bubbly enthusiastic man with a fantastic personality, and an incredible gentle nature with it, he was always so positive about everything in life and I'm sure made everybody's day brighter just by being in it. I have been on many investigations with Pete, Juliet and the team, and I am proud to call them my friends. Pete will be sorely missed by so many, such a hugely wonderful man in every sense will leave a huge hole. Much love to Juliet and the children, and of course to his brothers and sisters and all who knew and undoubtedly loved him. Xxx JayJay2011
  • Score: 0

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