Robert R. Robinson
April 6, 1952 – January 18, 2019
Robert R Robinson was born on April 6, 1952; the youngest of four boys of the union of Susanne Babette Schuster and Harold Emmett Robinson, in McArthur, Ohio. His birth was the only one attended by a doctor and nurse. When she started labor, Susi walked from their log cabin home in Hamden into McArthur. Upon arrival, the nurse asked her who she should help, the baby or Susi. The response was ‘the baby, I can help myself.’
Life was not easy for a divorced German War Bride and her four American boys living in a rural community. At one time, everyone in McArthur had their newspaper delivered by a Robinson boy.
In his infancy, Rob had exploratory surgery where it was discovered that one kidney was diseased and was removed. Instead of playing school sports, Rob participated along the sidelines, football manager & assistant coach and basketball play-by-play for a local radio station. With his mother an employee at Ohio University, Rob was able to attend and graduate from OU, becoming a dedicated OU Alum and supporter. It was at WOUB that he met, dated and married the love of his life, Elizabeth Walton. They were privately married on September 1, 1973 at the home of Roger and Eldonna Ashley and remarried publicly for her parents on December 22, 1973 in McArthur Ohio.
Upon graduation, Rob became the first full-time employee of West Virginia Public Radio in Beckley, WV. Elizabeth joined him in the fall and became a member of the radio’s part-time staff. Their oldest, Rick, was born at the Beckley Appalachian Regional Hospital, a miner’s hospital.
After establishing the WVA regional radio system [WVPB], Rob was recruited to do the same for Maine Public Broadcasting Network [MPBN], and the family moved to Bangor, Maine. It was here that their second son, Scott was born.
Four years later Rob again was recruited by WSKG in Binghamton, NY. His career there started as Radio Station Manager and progressed to Chief Operating Officer of WSKG Radio and TV. After moving approximately every four years, Rob and his family stayed in Binghamton long enough that both sons entered and graduated from the Binghamton School District.
On a clear summer day on a train traveling through the Rockies, Rob stated “there’s more to life than public broadcasting.” Leaving WSKG, he marketed a construction management firm; was Majority Leader Jim Tallon’s legislative aide specializing in economic development; and finally became the President and CEO of the Otsego County Chamber. In the 16+ years at the helm of the Chamber, Rob moved it to one of the strongest in NYS through recruitment of top-notch companies and volunteers.
The last position brought Rob and Elizabeth to Oneonta, NY where they continued to live following Rob’s separation from the Chamber and becoming disabled. Living with one kidney eventually took its toll and he started home dialysis and was successfully placed on the transplant list. Further medical issues took him off that list. When stairs became a major hurdle, Rob and Elizabeth moved into a house purchased by their son Rick and Aida specifically for Rob’s one floor living needs.
A life-long San Francisco Giants fan, Rob made his trip to “Mecca” [AT&T Park] with his family in the fall of 2016. He also loved riding trains, and in the spring of 2018 flew out to California to travel up the west coast on the Coast Starlight, transfer to the Empire Builder in Seattle for the trip back home, another “bucket list” trip.
Rob died early Friday morning, January 18, 2019 at home, like he wished.
Rob was predeceased by his mother Susi Tripp, step-father Leonard Tripp, oldest brother Harold and brother Roy [KIA Vietnam]. The death of his brother Roy impacted him the rest of his life. Rob is survived by wife Elizabeth Walton Robinson, son Rick and Aida, her daughter Faith of Oneonta NY; son Scott and fiancée Rachael of Bethel, Maine.
Brother Tom and Sally of Largo, FL and their two sons Tom and Roy. Sister-in-law Jane Dunn of Clarksburg, Ohio and children Tim, Tara and Todd. Many Robinson great nieces and nephews. Brother-in-Law John Walton and his wife Carol and their son Tom, all of Cleveland, Ohio.
At Rob’s request, we will be celebrating his life with a party. Please join us at the Oneonta Veterans Club on Saturday, February 9, 2019 from 1-4 pm, 279 Chestnut St, Oneonta, NY. Please bring your smile, your laughter and a favorite Rob story.
A second one will be held in Vinton County, Ohio at the convenience of the family.
Heartfelt thanks to Dr. Eric Knight and his staff. Without Dr. Knight being willing to listen and guide us through this process, we wouldn’t have the years together that we had.
Special thanks to the Catskill Palliative staff: Gail Chickitello, Lisa Schmitz, and their volunteer Charles King.
Please consider a donation in Rob’s name to Catskill Area Hospice and Palliative Care, 297 River Street Service Road, Oneonta, NY 13820.
Arrangements made through Les Grummons Funeral Home.
No services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Robert R. Robinson
Roger and Eldonna Ashley
January 29, 2019
We first met Rob when he was 14 years old and immediately took a liking to him. We were blessed because he took a liking to us too. He, and then Elizabeth, have been our friends for all these years.
Our lives have been much better because of our friendship and affection. Both Roger and I miss him already. May his family all remember the joy and love they shared and may it in time bring comfort to them.
Rob, although we miss you, you will always be remembered with good and happy thoughts.
January 28, 2019
Grew up in McArthur and I graduated with Roy and considered him a
best friend. We hung out at his mom and dads house and naturally, with his brothers, Harold, Tom and Bob. Bob was one of our athletic trainers for football. I was unaware of all his health problems until recently but was able to exchange a few emails with him.
Rest in peace friend.
George and Belinda
January 26, 2019
I knew all of the boys. Harold a year ahead of me in school; Roy & I graduated together, as well as John Goodwin. Both were killed in Viet Nam; I was lucky. Tom & Rob were younger. Their Mother was a school cook for several years; very good at her job & a nice lady. Thoughts & PRAYERS 🙏 to the family!
January 26, 2019
Peachy was number one sports fan..never knew about the kidney back then..was also the loudest supporter ..a few years older than me, you knew where Peachy was sitting at the basketball games..first time I heard the phrase , ref, shake your head , your eyes are stuck...good ol Peachy
January 25, 2019
I was so sorry to hear of Rob's death. Rob was a man who was larger than life. We lived next to each other on Boulevard Terrace and spent a lot of time being front porch neighbors as all of us gathered on our little cul-de-sac. Those were good times!
Elizabeth, Rick and Scott, you are often in my thoughts. I wish you peace.