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Former Grantham couple celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary Texas-style

A former employee of the Grantham Journal and his wife have celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in Texas, where they now live.

Ian and Eve McCollin, who married in St Anne’s church, Harrowby Road, Grantham, on August 20, 1960 celebrated their anniversary in San Antonio, in the southern United States.

Before emigrating to Canada in 1963, the couple lived in Dudley Road. Ian was a linotype operator with the Journal and Eve worked in the photography department at Boots.

Ian and Eve McCollin now live in Texas. (41932154)
Ian and Eve McCollin now live in Texas. (41932154)

Eve’s parents were Walter and Alice Horsley, of Culverthorpe. Ian was the eldest son of Sidney and Doris McCollin, of Dudley Road.

Terry McCollin, Ian’s middle brother, lives on Harrowby Road, and Melvin, the youngest brother, lives on Dudley Road.

Eve’s younger sister Sheila and husband Roger live near St Ives, Cambridgeshire.

Ian and Eve McCollin on their wedding day in 1960. (42169379)
Ian and Eve McCollin on their wedding day in 1960. (42169379)

Ian and Eve looked back on their early years in Grantham.

Ian told the Journal: “We have visited Grantham many times over the past 60 years. We were in town in 2016, 2018 and 2019, where we took a bus trip with A&P Travel Tours to St Anton, Austria.

“Since leaving Grantham in 1963, we both agreed the town has regressed for the worse. At one time there were four cinemas, about 30 or so pubs starting at Bridge End Road all the way down to North Parade. This was not counting all the other pubs on the side streets. I’m glad to see the Lord Harrowby [in Dudley Road] is still in business, right across from where my parents lived.

“I think it’s about time the people of Grantham elected council members who possess the knowledge and expertise to bring the town back from the brink of extinction.

“We used to enjoy going out every Saturday night, either to Jeff Wise’s dance hall on George Street or to Marco’s on Springfield Road. After, everyone would head up to Tony’s road cafe at the top of Spitalgate Hill for a midnight snack.

“These were the fun times in Grantham when we were growing up.”

The couple moved to Montreal, Canada, in June 1963.

Ian took a position with the Montreal Gazette and Eve as a photographer at a downtown hotel. In October of 1964, Ian was offered a position at a printing company in Barre, Vermont.

In 1967, their eldest son, Christopher, was born. The following year, the family moved to Brattleboro, in southern Vermont, where Ian spent 20 years at a large book printing company. With the days of the linotype machine being replaced by the computer type setting, Ian worked as a visual display operator until 1992.

During this time, their second son, Kevin, was born in 1969, and their third son, Anthony, in 1972. In 1977, the family bought their first home, which included five acres of land in Vernon, Vermont.

After graduating high school, Christopher enlisted in the US Navy and retired in 2005 with the rank of chief petty officer. He lives in San Antonio and is senior planner with the City of San Antonio.

Kevin served 12 years in the US Army as an airborne flight medic on helicopters, leaving military service with the rank of staff sergeant. Kevin now lives with his son in Colorado Springs, Colorado, working as a civilian contractor at Fort Carson Army Garrison. He lost his wife, Dede, in a fatal motor accident in 2014.

Tony joined the US Army as a military police officer, retiring after 21 years of service with the rank of first sergeant. During his service career, Tony did three tours of duty in Iraq. Tony and his family reside in Fountain, Colorado.

Tony is a civilian contractor working as an alcohol abuse specialist at Fort Carson Army Garrison. All three sons did tours of duty in various parts of the world during their service careers.

In 1992, Ian fulfilled a lifelong dream of becoming a police officer, serving with the Vernon Police Department.

In 1995 he attended the Vermont Police Academy for the 22-week, full-time training class. Upon graduation, he received the director’s award and the firearm’s award for most improved shooter. He eventually became the chief of police, until his retirement in 2005.

Ian and Eve retired to the warmer climate in San Antonio, Texas.

Since leaving England in 1963, the McCollins have visited 40 of the 50 United States. They have travelled to Central America, Mexico, Europe, North Africa, the Caribbean, Canada and many places in England.

Due to Covid-19 and travel restrictions being enforced in most countries, the couple’s diamond anniversary celebration was limited to a quiet evening together at one of San Antonio’s best restaurants.

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