The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

James Robinson



James Phillip Robinson, 84, of White Salmon, Wash., peacefully passed away, May 16, 2013 at his home, surrounded by family.

James was born in Bellingham, Wash. on Feb. 17, 1929 to Darlene (Clapp) & Robert Taylor. He later changed his last name to Robinson, after his mom married Johnny Robinson. He then had a brother, Loren.

James graduated from White Salmon’s Columbia High School in 1947, and later married Elsie DeWilde of White Salmon on Sept. 30, 1949.

James worked in construction most of his working life. He worked on many Dam Projects including Detroit Dam, Swift Reservoir Dam, The Dalles Dam, John Day Dam, Bonneville Dam 2nd Power House, and others.

He also worked a year or so for Klickitat County, as an Asst. Co. Engineer, in Goldendale. He worked for an engineering and surveying company in Hood River (Dielschneider & Assoc.) after he moved back to White Salmon in 1971. And then, on various other construction projects in Washington and Oregon. He retired in 1991, before returning to work for Klein & Assoc. of Hood River, doing private surveying.

James loved hunting, fishing, mushrooming, re-finishing furniture and MUSIC! He loved Big Band era music, and was quite a drummer. His idol was the great Gene Krupa. He played with Pete Graves & the Bunk House Buddies (Buck Smith, Billy Bible, Merle Knowles, and others; also backing bigger name greats as Bobby Bare, Tex Williams and Del Reeves), as well as other local musicians. They played at a lot of the local dance events, rodeos, street dances and others.

James was a long time member of the Mt Adams Elks Lodge in White Salmon. He was very active at the Lodge for many years, and was chosen Elk of the Year for ’97-’98.

James is survived by his wife Elsie Robinson of White Salmon; brother Loren and wife Marilyn Robinson of Roseville, Ca; daughter Nancy and husband Ron Jensen of Carson; Son Richard and wife Linda Robinson of Carson; (Late) son Don Robinson’s wife Chris Robinson of LaGrande, Ore .; one nephew; eight grandchildren, 15 great-grandchildren, and four great-great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his mother, father and son Donald Robinson.

A Celebration of Life will be held at Mt Adams Elks Lodge in White Salmon, Wash., on Saturday, May 25, 2013 at 2 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, a donation to Hospice of the Gorge would be appreciated.

Cards may be sent to Elsie Robinson, PO Box 1042, White Salmon, WA 98672.


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