Rupert John Collins was born at Springside near Orange in 1890. His parents were Daniel Francis and Catherine Ellen Collins.
‘Duffy’, as he became known, travelled throughout western NSW, working as a shearer’s cook. He worked at Amaroo, Burrowa Station and at the government wheat area of Woodlands, near Tullamore.
It is unclear when Rupert enlisted, but by early April 1915 he was the regimental cook at Liverpool camp. During his time at Woodlands Rupert had developed a painful foot condition, which became worse during his time at Liverpool. Doctors at Sydney Hospital diagnosed a malignant growth and advised amputation of the right leg below the knee. Rupert agreed to the operation, however it appears that his diagnosis was too late, and there was nothing further that doctors could offer him. Rupert returned to Orange to spend the remainder of his time with his family.
On 8 December the Leader reported that Rupert was seriously ill, and that little hope was held for his recovery. He died the following day, aged 25.
Rupert John Collins is commemorated on the Patrician Brothers’ Roll of Honour and on the World War I Roll of Honour on the southern face of the Orange Cenotaph.