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1984 Collin 2023

Collin Patrick Verbick

January 4, 1984 — June 29, 2023

Davenport Crystal Lake

Collin Patrick Verbick passed away peacefully at his home on June 29, 2023.  He was born January 4, 1984 in Houston, TX to Donald and Mary Verbick.

Collin is survived by his wife of 17 years, Amber; daughter, Coral; parents, Donald and Mary; siblings, Hannah (Mark) Powers, John (Jennifer) Verbick, Christopher (Giulia Piu) Verbick, and Zachary (Laura) Verbick; mother in law, Sue Sheldon; sister in law, Amanda (Mark) Roe; and nieces and nephews, Ben, Silas, Hazel, Elsie, and Owen Powers, Trenam and Myra Verbick, Leo and Amy Verbick, and Evelyn and Miles Roe.

Natural burial services for Collin will be held privately and a Celebration of Life will be held on Sunday, July 16, from 1-4 pm at Creek Bend Nature Center, at the LeRoy Oakes Forest Preserve in St. Charles, IL. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating in Collin's memory:  Kane Forest Preserve Foundation https://kaneforestpreservefoundation.org/ or  Morton Arboretum www.mortonarb.org ; or Cholangiocarcinoma Foundation https://cholangiocarcinoma.org/

Collin Verbick, loving and devoted husband, wonderful dad, much beloved son, brother, nephew, uncle, and cousin, and a friend you could always count on. Growing up, Collin would keep all of his family laughing hard at his antics, and very much appreciating his intelligence, wit, kindness, curiosity of the natural world, and loving ways.

Collin shared his life with, and gave his undying love to his amazing wife and best friend Amber, and to his wonderful daughter Coral, who shares Collin’s and Amber’s enthusiasm for nature and the outdoors. Collin has always been very much an outdoors person. Collin loved to take Coral on camping and fly-fishing trips where he taught her about the trees, plants, animals, and natural world around her.

In high school, Collin was a member of Messiah Methodist Church in Plymouth, Minnesota, and was very active in the church youth group. Collin traveled on several mission trips to Juarez, Mexico where he helped build houses for poor and disadvantaged people. Collin, with his wife Amber, worked with Habitat for Humanity to build homes for others.

Collin demonstrated to others how a single individual can create a large and lasting impact on many people in this world. Collin earned the highest rank of Eagle Scout in the Boy Scouts of America and served as Troop Guide, teaching younger scouts outdoor camping skills and life skills. He joined Scouts in Lake Jackson, Texas (a Gulf Coast community associated with sunny beaches, marine animals, seawater tidal ponds, and forested areas) and continued his scouting career when his family moved to Minnesota. He went on many high adventure trips to other states around the USA, camping, canoeing the Boundary Waters, hiking, and mountain backpacking. He has continued to travel and explore many other important nature preservation areas throughout his life. He and Amber especially treasured their adventures at Crater Lake, Cannon Beach, the Redwoods, Utah, Hawaii and Iceland, where among other things, he slept among the giant redwoods, visited volcanoes and walked on a glacier.

While in Scouts in Plymouth, Minnesota, Collin started a new tradition in his Troop to raise money for the homeless. Collin would sleep out in a tent non-stop every night during the coldest months of winter November-January in below zero conditions, soliciting donations from individuals, families, and businesses. He raised tens of thousands of dollars during his multi-year fundraising campaign for the homeless. The camping/fundraising tradition continues to this day.  He hoped to make the world around us more caring, better understood, and more accessible to all.

Collin was an avid and skilled clay potter, spending many happy hours in his basement pottery studio. He created all kinds of pottery using many different kinds of materials and techniques while working at his foot-powered potter's wheel and firing the items in his kiln. Collin loved to take his daughter Coral down to his pottery studio, where they could have fun, tell jokes, laugh, and create pottery together.

Collin earned a Bachelors of Science in Biology Degree from Northland College, an environmental education college located in Ashland, Wisconsin, on the shore of Lake Superior. He continued his post-graduate studies at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois. One of the reasons Collin decided to go to Northland College was that during his Junior and Senior years at Wayzata High School in Minnesota, he attended a summer education program called Storms and Stars, where he met his beautiful future wife Amber, and fell in love.

Collin was a true, friendly servant leader, helping his coworkers as much as he could. Collin worked as a Senior Forest Ranger for the Forest Preserve District of Kane County and worked in all of Kane County’s Forest Preserves. Collin was Kane County’s Arborist. Even during his last struggle with his very challenging health issues, he was able to work as much as he could, and recently earned an additional Arborist Certification. Collin has always believed in quiet, supportive leadership, where he worked right alongside you, and encouraged you to always do your best. He was instrumental in helping to rebuild several projects including a Japanese Garden and Pioneer Windmill Project at the Kane County Forest Preserves.

To understand Collin, think of someone who is a connector of communities and a helping hand to all. His kindness was palpable, one of the best listeners you've ever met. Full of curiosity and fun, he could be an absolute goofball, shameless, disarming those around him by just being himself. At home in the natural world, a friend to oak trees, turtles, prairie grass, and dragonflies. Someone who is equally content seeking adventure, making his own path up a mountain and sleeping under the stars, or being quietly cozy at home curled up on the couch with a movie, popcorn, and his family. Someone who cares deeply, gives his all to solve problems, and supports the people around him. The amount that we miss him is immeasurable. He also inspires us to pick up where he left off, and to continue spreading kindness, a problem-solving spirit, and a voice of reason during conflicts, just as he has always done for us. This man is greatly loved.

We intend always to remember his motto, "Life is Good!"


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Collin Patrick Verbick, please visit our flower store.

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