In Memoriam

Allen Robinson

1951 - 2001

Allen Robinson

Leonard Allen Robinson was born on September 30, 1951 in a small town called Valdese, North Carolina. He was the older of two siblings, the other being a girl, Cheryl. His father, Leonard, who died in 1994, worked as a police officer and his mother, Arlie, worked as a bank teller. Allen's parents moved to Florida in the 1970s and he joined them in 1979. As he himself has mentioned, he was married twice (with no children from either marriage). He had many different jobs in his life, working as a shoe salesman, a textbook salesman, and co-owner of Robinson Books in Leesburg, Florida, as well as a rural carrier for the U.S. Postal Service. He resigned from the Post Office in 1998 because of disability, devoting himself after that to being a webmaster. A writer at heart, he came to see "Who's Doctor Who" as his legacy. He died of his seventh heart attack on June 7, 2001, just a few months shy of his 50th birthday.

Those are the facts, and they may not even sound all that exciting. But the Allen Robinson I knew and came to call my best friend was far from dull. He was highly intelligent, having once scored in the 160s on an IQ test. He was funny, creative, impatient with idiocy (he came to say that he "didn't suffer fools at all"). There were contradictions: he was an anarchist who worked for the Post Office, a pacifist who was well versed on military weapons. (When I asked him about the latter he said, "It's a guy thing.") He was once an avid comic book reader; besides Batman, his favorite characters included - ironically enough - Death from the Sandman books (and I'm sure he would argue with me on my use of the word "ironically" just now - he hated the Alanis Morrisette song). He was anxiously awaiting the return of Buffy from the dead, as well as the new Star Trek series Enterprise, and I'd like to think that wherever he is now, he is enjoying both series. He had tons of books he wanted me to read (and that I haven't yet), such as The Books of Magic from DC and any of the Nero Wolfe novels. He never did get around to showing me what a Rockwell Kent painting looked like; after his death, I researched it myself on the Internet (he once used the word "Philistine" when I told him I didn't know who Rockwell Kent was). And of course, he was always trying to get me interested in Doctor Who, and seems to have largely succeeded after his passing, a mystery I am still trying to fathom. Perhaps he bequeathed to me his own avid interest; it's not the explanation that makes the most sense, but it is the one I like the most.

Rest in peace, my friend.

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