Robby Robinson, Crossmen Founding Director, Passes Away

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A World Drum Corps Hall of Fame member since 2008, Harold “Robby” Robinson, Sr. passed away at age 84 on Valentine’s Day February 14, surrounded by family members. He had been experiencing major organ failure a few days previously while a patient at Lancaster General Hospital in Pennsylvania. A memorial service and celebration of life will be held at a later time.

In 1974, Robby Robinson was the founding director of the Crossmen drum and bugle corps, the highly successful group formed by merging two junior corps in the Philadelphia area: the 507 Hornets and Keystone Regiment. He served as director until 1986. The Crossmen finished in the Drum Corps International (DCI) finals 22 times in the 30 years following the merger.

Earlier in his drum corps career, he was a snare drummer with the Tri Community Cadets from 1952 to 1960. He was the snare drummer in the percussion quartet that won the annual Mid-Atlantic Individual/Quartet title from 1956 to 1959. He is a member of the Crossmen Hall of Fame.

He taught marching and manoeuvring to the Haddon Heights Vagabonds in 1960, then taught the percussion section of the 1st State Cadets of Delaware from 1961 to 1963. He was the marching and manoeuvring instructor for the Bellaires of Belmar, New Jersey from 1961 to 1966 and Tri Community Cadets from 1968 to 1971. He became director of Tri Community in 1971, then served as director of the Keystone Regiment from 1972 to 1974.

He judged the marching caption for the National Association of Judges from 1961 to 1985 and percussion from 1961 to 1975. He was a member of the first DCI judging task force from 1981 to 1984.

His son Robbie Robinson Jr. is also a member of the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame, inducted in 2007. He is the first drummer to win three Drum Corps International (DCI) individual snare-drumming titles. He won the titles in 1979, 1980 and 1982.

The late Vince Bruni of Rochester, New York founded the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame in 1976. Membership has since grown from six charter members – Vince Bruni, George Bull, Jim Costello, Henry “Lefty” Mayer, Harvey Olderman, Vinnie Ratford – to more than 550 members who have contributed to the activity across North America, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, the Middle East, South Africa and Japan.

The World Drum Corps Hall of Fame is a non-profit organization honoring those individuals who have contributed significantly over many years to the development and continuing excellence of drum and bugle corps activity around the world. For more information, visit the website at

Posted by on Friday, February 18th, 2022. Filed under Current News, DCI World, FrontPage Feature.