I'm sorry to pass along the news that Jim Robbins has passed away. He passed peacefully at home, on Friday June 30. Jim was 87 years old
An obituary isn't yet available, but visitation will be Saturday July 8, from 2-4pm - followed by a short service - at Damiano Funeral Home, Franklin Ave, Long Branch
I first started speaking with Jim back in 1995-1996, when he would ask me question after question the occasional times I would venture down into Monmouth County (a Middlesex County resident at that time) for a road race. He knew the sport and we had some good conversations - but he didn't even tell me for a while that he was a reporter covering the races ! He used to joke that he was my good luck charm, since I fared well at every race where he saw me
We've been friends ever since.
A retired public school English teacher, Jim never stopped writing
As a sports journalist, he covered countless road races throughout Monmouth & Ocean County - races from JSRC, SAC, FARC, ORC and many, many more. He did his best to not only provide as much detail and factual matter in his coverage, but to also cover the human side.
Many of you on this list can say you've been interviewed by Jim at a race... many of you, multiple times over the years !
Jim covered not just the winners, but also other competitors - he made sure to get a wide variety of stories, opinions and different personal perspectives and backgrounds. When Jim believed in a race, a cause, a race director, volunteers, etc, he made sure to give props best where he saw props due. As his wife Marianne just today said about Jim - "He loved the running world even though he could no longer participate; he was still a cheerleader". Jim was a cheerleader, indeed - he cheered for ALL of us.
The first part of that statement sometimes gets overshadowed by the second part - Jim was indeed a participant. Yes, he wrote about running, stood at the finish of many races to interview the participants, to see the faces as they crossed, to hear the grunts and groans, to carefully observe the finish line volunteers, the scoring company personnel, the spectators, etc. As a reporter, Jim always wanted to catch it all - he wanted to convey to his readers the full experience of a race - and that's because he WAS a runner, a racer - and an experienced one, at that ! Jim probably had as many age group awards as he had tallied written/published race articles.
For any of you who might not have know all those years who email@example.com was that was so often and so cheerfully replying and adding to the celebration of my birthday emails, that was Jim - cheerleading and reveling in the collective running community joy. And for those of you fortunate enough to have been included in his own personal email list, you know how much Jim loved shared open, informative and debatable discourse.
Jim was also a Veteran on the United States Army
I will provide any further info and updates, as soon as I become aware of any.
Jim was an incredible person and a good friend. He will be missed by many
A full obituary is expected by July 5