Donald E. Robinson, the great-great-nephew of Harriet Tubman, died Wednesday in his Buffalo home after a brief illness. He was 76.
A Buffalo native, Mr. Robinson represented the family at many tributes and ceremonies honoring Tubman, including the 1995 dedication of the Harriet Tubman Library in Auburn.
Mr. Robinson attended School 47 and graduated from Fosdick-Masten Park High School in 1948. He received an associate's degree in electrical engineering and instrument technology from Erie County Technical Institute. He attended the University of Buffalo for premed studies.
In 1957, he married Earlie Mae Livingston. She died in 1998.
From 1949 until his discharge in 1952 as a corporal, Mr. Robinson served in the Air Force. He was stationed in Alaska during the Korean War and he was part of the Military Air Transport Service. For his military service, he received a certificate of commendation for proficiency in radio mechanics.
For 40 years, he was employed at Harrison Radiator, beginning in 1953 as a production worker. In 1968, he was promoted to instruments technician. By the time he retired, he had become a senior engineering technician.
Mr. Robinson was active in community service as a member of LAMBS (Love and Mercy Believers), the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Urban League, the American Legion, the Commanders Club, the Veterans of Foreign Wars and Harrison Radiator G-9 Management Club. He was a former member of Paramount Lodge 73, and East Side Anglers.
For more than 30 years, he was a member of St. Margaret Catholic Church, where he served as an usher, a lector and Eucharistic minister since 1992.
Survivors include a daughter, Vera Donna Johnson; a son, Mark Edward; and a brother, William.
Visitation will be at 11 a.m. today, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at noon in St. Margaret Church, 1395 Hertel Ave.