Major General Harry Collins,'15

                                          Major General Harry Collins
                                          WMA Class of 1915
Harry John Collins arrived on the Western campus from Chicago. During his time as a student he showed exceptional talent in military studies and athletics.  After graduation Collins attended the University of Chicago and in 1917 was commissioned into the U.S. Army.  His assignments in WW I were varied and included an overseas stint.
 
In 1943 Collins was named the commanding officer of the 42nd Infantry Division (the famed Rainbow Division). The division played a major role in halting the German advance during the Battle of the Bulge. The Rainbow Division liberated the Dachau concentration camp at the end of the war and later assumed occupation duty in Austria with Collins serving as military governor. Following the war Collins was given several command assignments and also served in the office of the Military Attaché in Moscow, USSR. Upon retirement in 1954, General Collins settled in Salzburg, Austria where he had been made an honorary citizen for liberating the city in 1945. Collins decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star, Bronze Star, French Legion of Honor, and the French Croix de Guerre.

Gen. Collins gave a moving commencement speech to the Western senior class in 1944. On the eve of his departure for the war in Europe he looked out at the young men of WMA and concluded his talk by saying, “I would be proud to have any of you serve with me.”‘

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