Crossed the Bar

Captain(E) Charles (Charlie) M Collis RFA(Retd)

It is with so much sadness that I  announce that Captain(E) Charlie Collis  Crossed the Bar on Saturday 16th November in St Martin whilst on a Caribbean Cruise with his wife Sandy. He was 82. He was cremated in St Martin on 21 Nov and his ashes have been flown home.


A Celebration of Charlie’s life will be held at All Saints Church, Marsh Lane, Fawley, SO45 1DL (HERE for their website and HERE for a map) on Monday 9th December at 14:00 and afterwards at the Ashlett Club, Ashlett Creek, Fawley, SO45 1DT (HERE for their website and HERE for a map). Old shipmates and colleagues will be very welcome.

Family flowers only at the family’s request however donations in lieu, if desired, should be made to the Missions to Seamen and the RFA Association .

On behalf of the RFA Association I extend our sincere condolences to his widow Sandy daughters Susan and Debbie and his three grandchildren.


If you have a remebrance of Charlie please email it to be at and I will post them on this page.

Pat Thompson writes:- I first sailed with Charlie in 1972/3 in RFA Tidepool during Operation Millstone as part of the preparations for a NEO following Idi Amin’s antics in Uganda. Over the years I sailed with Charlie a couple more times and bumped into him at RFA Reunions. I found him to be a most genial and friendly man who will be sorely missed.


Paul Martin (Tiny) Bradley writes :- We met in passing several times. A gentleman and very pleasant to myself always. RIP.


Alex Blackwood writes:- I sailed with Charlie as my “Chief” on Many trips in “O” Boats. So sad to hear of him Crossing the Bar. As you said Genial and Friendly, I had a lot of respect for him as a Chief and a person.

Condolences to Sandy and Family.

John Wilkins writes:- It is with great sadness that I learnt of Charles’s passing although I am glad he was with his beloved Sandy at the end.

I have known Charles and his family for over 40 years and in that time we became firm friends. Charles was an Engineer’s Engineer with an unusual sympathetic and mutual approach to Deck Officers that made him liked and respected throughout the fleet. Many times as a young Captain I took my problems and engineering queries to Charles, who would sit me down and  in no time at all I knew I didn’t have a problem.
In Charles the world has lost a highly professional gentleman respected by many more people than he would have thought.
A true friend to me, a loving Husband, Father and Grandfather.
Rest easy Charles