William C. Robinson, 70, of Bradenton, FL, passed away on January 2, 2020. Born on December 26, 1949 in Bradenton, Florida to Harry and Genevieve Robinson, he was a graduate of Manatee High School and then the University of Alabama with a degree in marketing. Bill and his brother, H.L. “Penny” Robinson built Robby’s Sporting Goods, which was founded and had its corporate headquarters in Bradenton. After selling Robby’s, Bill purchased Pursley Tree Farms, re-branded it to the Treehouse and supplied quality-grown trees to landscapers throughout the southeast United States. Bill was especially proud of the Robinson Preserve, which was made possible by his and Peggy’s donation to Manatee County. Today, the Robinson Preserve is one of Florida’s preeminent recreational parks located in northwest Bradenton with over 680 acres of coastal wetland habitat. Later, with his son Parks, Bill created Fit2Run, the Runner’s Superstore, a family owned and operated running specialty store. Bill was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, was on the Board of Directors of Rawlings Sporting Goods, Palma Sola Botanical Park and the Chair of the Board of the Suncoast Aquatic Nature Center Association. Bill is survived by his wife of 48 years Margaret “Peggy” Robinson; sons Will, Wesley and Parks (wife Kate) all of Bradenton, FL; 2 grandchildren Brenden Parks, Jr. and Genevieve and his brother John (wife Jane) and several nieces and nephews and brothers and sisters-in-law and was predeceased by his brother H.L. “Penny” Robinson (wife Sandra) and his sister, Rebecca Logue. Bill’s favorite quote from the Robby’s yearbook was “Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
The funeral service will be held Saturday, January 11th at 1:00 P.M. at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 3100 26th Street West, Bradenton. Burial will follow at Manasota Memorial Park, 1221 53rd Avenue East, Bradenton.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Manatee Community Foundation, Bill Robinson Foundation in memo line, 2820 Manatee Avenue West, Bradenton, Florida 34205 and/or St. Joseph Catholic Church, 3100 26th Street West, Bradenton, Florida 34205.
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