JC Robinson
JC Robinson

JC Robinson

AFRH-G Resident Highlight - JC Robinson
By Lori Kerns | Librarian

JC Robinson was born in the small town of Browndale, Texas. He is the youngest of four children born to a farmer and housewife. His family moved around Texas a lot after WWII. JC graduated from high school in Chester, Texas. He made the decision to join the military soon after graduation. He credits John Wayne’s movie, Sands of Iwo Jima, for this decision. For him, “there was no decision” on which branch he wanted to serve. He chose the Marines because “there’s no other.”

He went into service on 14 November 1951. For his entire military career he served in a rifle company. This included his tour of duty in Vietnam, where he served as a gunnery sergeant. JC proudly served as a Marine for over 20 years.

Upon his military retirement, he went to work at Pasadena High School in Texas where he taught ROTC for a few years. He left his teaching job to begin working with Brown & Root Construction as a concrete foreman building a nuclear power plant in Bay City, Texas. His adventures took him to the oil fields where he worked as a mud engineer taking care of the chemicals on the rig.

As the oil boom began to shut down, JC found himself out of work so he made the humanitarian decision to join the Peace Corps. His first assignment took him to Gabon in central Africa. He stayed in Gabon for two and a half years building schools and housing for the schools’ teachers. When his service time was up, he came back to the states to attend East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma. He earned a degree in environmental science and headed back out of the country for another stint with the Peace Corps.

JC went to Nepal in South Asia. In Nepal, he worked with the locals to improve their vegetation and livestock by helping with their soil conservation and increasing the amount of trees for firewood. He returned stateside to begin working on Leech Lake Indian Reservation in Minnesota. He served as the safety officer and also oversaw the sanitation of 13 public water systems, including the safety and sanitation of the reservation’s hospital.

JC’s next job was a contract position with the EPA as a lab technician in a water research laboratory. He worked here until he retired from his civilian career. He decided to take one last position with the Peace Corps, which took him to Morocco. He was appointed to work with the health administration teaching the locals how to properly sanitize their hands and purify the water from their irrigation ditches. He also assisted the medical personnel with vaccinations and the health and sanitation issues of the community. His assignment in Morocco lasted about two and a half years before he returned to America to stay. His retirement was cut short when he decided to return to the EPA lab where he had previously worked. His deteriorating eyesight forced him to finally hang up his hat at age 79! He began enjoying his retirement by living on his farm in Ada where he raised cattle and goats.          

Due to his poor eyesight, JC decided to move to AFRH-G back in 2015. He stayed for a while but decided to go back to Ada where he built a cabin on his farm to live. He stayed until 2017 and resolved to return to AFRH-G. His never-ending penchant for volunteerism is still as strong as ever as he spends his well-earned retirement taking residents to church and prayer services. If that is not enough, he recently extended his generosity when he began volunteering with IMMS’s (Institute for Marine Mammal Studies) education department where he helps visitors to pet the animals and also helps answer their questions.