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Don ROBINSON

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Don ROBINSON Obituary
ROBINSON, Donald C. Musician and educator Donald C. Robinson died on July 22 at the age of 89. Born in Gastonia, North Carolina, in 1925, Don moved to Atlanta in 1935. After his graduation from Murphy Junior High and Boys High, Don served three years in the US Navy. Upon his discharge, he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of North Carolina, where he was drum major of the marching band. Don returned to Atlanta to teach history in the Fulton County Schools. Soon, however, he felt the urge to follow his calling to music education, and became an instructor at the University of Michigan, where he earned a Master's Degree in Music in 1953. Later, he was a music teacher in the US Air Force Dependent Schools in Wiesbaden, Germany, where he met Lynn Eller, who became his companion and life partner for almost 60 years until his death in December, 2012. Don returned to the Fulton County Schools in 1958 as Director of Music Education until his retirement in 1980. A gifted choral conductor, Don was Associate Director of the Choral Guild of Atlanta until 1962 and then Director until 1975. Don was Music Director of the Atlanta Boy Choir (1960-63) and the Atlanta Jewish Center Chorus (1963-66). From 1963 until 1990 he was Minister of Music at Central Presbyterian Church, where he also served as a Ruling Elder. Governor Jimmy Carter appointed Don to the Georgia Council for the Arts in 1973, and the University of Georgia Department of Music honored him with its Distinguished Service Award in 1981. In recognition of these and many other contributions to the field of music education, the Music Educators National Conference named him a Lowell Mason Fellow in 2002. At various times, Don served as president and executive director of the Georgia Music Educators Association, president of the Southern Division of the Music Educators National Conference, and a 50-year member and active participant in the International Society for Music Education, attending 18 international conferences on six continents. In retirement, Don used his considerable knowledge as the manager of the arts and music department of Oxford Books. He also continued to participate in the Atlanta Music Club, the Atlanta Opera, the Atlanta Symphony, and other arts programs in the city. Don is survived by his sister, Carleen Robinson Savage, of Austell, formerly of Dunwoody; his niece, Linda Savage McCord and her daughter, Larken; his nephew, Don Savage and his wife, Chantal, and their children, Ryan and Maia; and a host of music-makers and music-lovers in Atlanta and far beyond. A memorial service celebrating his rich life will be held at Central Presbyterian Church on Sunday, August 10, at 2:00. A reception at the church will follow. Online condolences may be made at hmpattersonspringhill.com

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Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution from July 25 to July 27, 2014
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