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A final salute for 'Mayor of Green Valley' John Robinson Jr.

Ceremony on Dr. King holiday salutes installation of community leader's grave marker

As part of a day of service held during the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, the life and legacy of John Robinson Jr. was celebrated with installation of a marker at his grave at Pleasant Valley Memorial Park in Annandale.

Robinson was known as the unofficial “Mayor of Green Valley” for his decades of service to that South Arlington community.

“The unveiling today on the holiday honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was very appropriate for such a tribute [to] . . . someone who dedicated a lifetime to service for the Arlington community,” the Green Valley Civic Association noted.

“Mr. Robinson was our drum-major for justice. He marched for our rights and ensured that the community needs were met,” the organization noted. 

After realizing that his grave was unmarked, Mrs. Althea Roseboro approached the civic association in support of having one designed and installed. In just a few weeks after starting a GoFundMe page, the goal was met and the cemetery ordered and installed the marker.   

Spirits were high even as the temperatures were low during the graveside dedication service, which began with a prayer from Rev. Ellihue Henderson Jr. of Mount Zion Baptist Church. Remarks were delivered by Green Valley Civic Association president Portia Clark; Rev. Adrian Nelson II of Lomax AME Zion Church (where Mr. Robinson worshiped) and on behalf of the family by Rev. Tony Winger.

Robinson, who died in 2010 at age 75, long was involved in the Green Valley (then also known as Nauck) community, including running a community newspaper at a time when activities in the largely segregated Green Valley neighborhood were seldom reported in the press.

In 2022, the new town square in the Green Valley neighborhood was dedicated to Robinson and his legacy.