Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

October 17, 2013

Former Marine on a mission of honor

Barry Porterfield
Pauls Valley Democrat

bporterfield@pvdemocrat.com — It’s literally a mission from God for one Pennsylvania man as his long journey to honor a special group of people brought him to Pauls Valley this week.

Lance Robinson is a former Marine now going solo on his own “Hike of Honor” as he travels across America, mostly on foot, to honor the fallen firefighters of 9/11, along with all first-responders and military personnel giving service to their communities and country today.

During a visit with Robinson as he stopped at Pauls Valley’s fire station on Tuesday he said his strong beliefs in God led to this mission of honor he started more than three years ago.

“I believe the Lord God has led me to do this,” Robinson said.

“I believe the Lord placed it on my heart,” he said. “I felt the Lord touch me and I’ve been on this mission to honor the fallen ever since. It just drives me.

“As long as the mission keeps going, that’s all that matters.”

One part of Robinson’s quest is to honor the 343 firefighters lost in the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

He’s doing that by traveling 343 miles from Tulsa to Dallas, Texas. Each mile will be marked by 343 flags placed along the way.

Robinson is also hoping to get support for the creation of Brother to Brother Day each September.

The idea here is to recognize the service given by all military veterans and first-responders, such as police officers, firefighters and emergency medical personnel.

Robinson was working as a general contractor and volunteer firefighter at his home in Pennsylvania when one day, very early in the morning, he was inspired to do something to honor all of these emergency personnel.

That was on Sept. 10, 2010 when his one-man mission became a hike across America.

“I want to promote Brother to Brother Day on September 10,” Robinson said.

“I want to honor our military and honor all of those who have fallen since 9/11,” he said.

“It’s all about 9/11 and first-responders and the military — that’s what this is all about.

“I want to honor those men and women who put on the uniform and serve.”

To garner that support Robinson is traveling to towns across America seeking proclamations from city mayors and state governments.

“I’m seeking out proclamations,” he said. “I’m not wanting to create a holiday.

“What I’m looking for is a day of recognition only to honor these men and women who serve.”

Most mayors he’s encountered have supported the proclamation idea, along with Oklahoma’s governor, Mary Fallin, who has verbally offered her support, Robinson added.

His travels through Oklahoma makes this the 31st state he’s visited since he started this mission. His goal is to visit six states a year until he gets to all 48 states in the continental U.S.

After Robinson’s stop in Pauls Valley he continued the mission with a hike from Wynnewood to Davis.

More about Robinson’s quest can be found at honorhikeacrossamerica.com online.