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‘He was fearless’: Family and friends remember kayaker found in the White River

Family remembers Marcus Robinson

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Marcus Robinson was one of two kayakers who went missing April 16 on the White River.

On Monday, his body was recovered, and his community was reeling from the loss.

The 30-year-old was on the water around 8:30 p.m. Tuesday with his cousin, 22-year-old Solomon Shirley, when their kayak capsized and did not resurface. A 911 caller reported the incident from Belmont Beach on the city’s west side.

After five days of searching, Indianapolis Fire Department crews were called to the 600 block of North White River Parkway West Drive around 9:34 a.m. Monday for a dive rescue. That’s right off West Michigan Street in the Haughville community west of Eskenazi Hospital.

The body was recovered and identified as Shirley.

On Monday night, a second body was found on the river near West 10th and Porto Allegre streets. On Tuesday, the body was identified as Robinson.

Robinson’s best friend and brother, DuBois Johnson, described the loss as a “hole” in his life.

Johnson and Robinson worked together at Triumph Boxing on the city’s north side. Johnson serves as head coach and Robinson was also a competitor and on the coaching staff.

Other members of the staff at Triumph Boxing are similarly impacted by Robinson’s death.

Marcus Robinson with his Triumph Boxing community. (Provided Photo/Triumph Boxing)

“His connection to the gym rose from just a guy coming in to hit the bags to someone in a leadership role and it was never an ego thing with him,” the gym’s co-owner Sean Eichenberg said.

As a coach, he interacted with students and learners every day.

One of his students, Shelbie Crabtree, said his impact as a welcoming face and spirit far outweighed his coaching role.

“He was someone that if I was going to be at the same place, I could stand next to him, I could sit next to him and he was just so welcoming,” Crabtree said

Robinson’s community is determined to ensure his legacy is characterized by his fearlessness, kindness and willingness to learn.