Glenn J. Collins was born in Elmore City, Oklahoma, on 1 July 1913. He attended the University of Oklahoma and received his Bachelor of Science in Medicine in 1933 and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the U.S Army Medical Corps.
His previous duties and assignments include; In June 1939; contract physician with the Civilian Conservation Corps at Woodward, OK and at the Station Hospital, Fort Sill, OK; Adjutant Plans and Training Officer, Executive Officer, Battalion Commander and Regimental Commander with the First Medical Regiment, Fort Ord , California; Surgeon’s office of First U.S. Army at Fort Jackson, South Carolina and accompanied its advance party to the Philippines as Plans and Operations Officer. After the surrender of Japan he returned to CONUS with the First Army and served in the Army Surgeon’s Office at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
While assigned to Germany in January 1946, General Collins served as Assistant Executive officer of the European Theater Surgeon’s Office. Other duties while assigned to Germany were: Chief, Personnel Division, Executive Officer (Medical Section, Continental Base Section at Bad Nauheim, Germany); Surgical Service, 97th General Hospital at Frankfurt, Germany and later the Surgical Service of the 98th General Hospital, Munich, Germany. He returned to CONUS in November 1948 and was assigned to Brooke General Hospital, Fort Sam Houston, Texas for residency training in general surgery; however, was interrupted from May to November 1950 for a tour of duty as Chief of Surgery at the 172d Station Hospital in Sendai, Japan during the Korean conflict. General Collins was assigned to the office of the Surgeon General as Executive Officer and served there until May 1965, when he returned to the Medical field Service School as Commandant.