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Atlanta principal drowns on vacation in Puerto Rico while trying to save his wife who also died


Atlanta school principal and his college professor wife both drown on vacation in Puerto Rico – leaving their two teenage sons orphans

  • Jamar and AnnMari Robinson drowned in San Juan, Puerto Rico, last Sunday
  • Local reports indicate AnnMari was dragged by a strong current and her husband tried to save her, but both went under 
  • Jamar was principal at Westlake High School in South Fulton, Georgia; he was named ‘Outstanding Georgia Citizen’ in 2014 
  • His wife was assistant professor at Georgia State University and was working on her doctorate 
  • Couple leave behind their two sons, ages 14 and 15, including a specila-needs boy 

By Snejana Farberov For

Published: | Updated:

A well-respected Atlanta-area high school principal has drowned on a Puerto Rican beach while trying to rescue his wife, who also perished in the ocean during a weekend getaway. 

Jamar Robinson, the principal of Westlake High School in South Fulton, and his wife AnnMari Robinson, an assistant professor at Georgia State University, have been identified as the tourists who died last Sunday in San Juan, Puerto Rico. 

The couple leave behind their two sons, ages 14 and 15, including a boy with special needs, who are now staying with relatives. 

Tragedy; Georgia high school principal Jamar Robinson and his college professor wife, AnnMari (pictured), both drowned in Puerto Rico last week 

The Robinsons were on the beach behind the La Concha hotel in San Juan (pictured) on Sunday when a rip current pulled them under 

According to a local news outlet, the Robinsons had traveled to Puerto Rico last weekend and were staying at the Conrad hotel.

At around 3pm on Sunday, Jamar and AnnMari were swimming behind the La Concha hotel when a strong rip current dragged the woman out to sea.

Her husband went after her, trying to get his wife to safety, but they both ended up being pulled under.

Several people who were on the scene attempted to rescue the Robinsons, but to no avail.

Westlake’s head football coach Booby May later confirmed Robinsons’ passing on Twitter.

‘Our hearts are broken for the family of Mr. Robinson and Mrs. Robinson and the entire Westlake community,’ May wrote. ‘We will always remember Mr. Robinson as the principal who worked tirelessly, was always upbeat, passionate, never missed a game or event and LOVED his students with a heart that was unmatched.’

Jamar died trying to safe his wife, according to local reports. The couple leave behind two teenage sons, ages 14 and 15 

Jamar Robinson served as the principal at Westlake High School in South Fulton, Georgia 

The Fulton County school system released an official statement addressing the tragic deaths of the principal and his wife, reported Atlanta Journal Constitution.

‘Robinson was an inspirational leader who brought joy with his passion for education and his students,’ officials stated. ‘We join the community in remembering him and expressing our condolences to his family.’

According to his biography posted on the Westlake High School’s website, Robinson was an Atlanta native and received his Bachelor’s degree in psychology from Florida A&M University, where he served as a drum major in the marching band. 

He then went on to earn advanced degrees from Georgia State and Georgia Southern universities.

Robinson was repeatedly recognized for his work as an educator, including in 2014, when he was named an ‘Outstanding Georgia Citizen’ by then Secretary of State Brian Kemp.

Robinson was named an ‘Outstanding Georgia Citizen’ in 2014 by then Secretary of State Brian Kemp

AnnMari Robinson served as an assistant professor at Georgia State University. She was working on her doctorate at the time of her death 

Robinson met his wife, AnnMari, at Florida A&M University, where she graduated with degrees in criminal justice and public administration. At the time of her death, the mom-of-two was working toward her doctorate at Georgia State, where she had served as an assistant professor for 15 years.  

Friends and colleagues remembered the Robinsons as pillars of their community who dedicated their lives to education and helping others. 

‘RIP Jamar Robinson. He was a great leader and mentor to so many,’ tweeted Fulton County athletic director Steven Craft. ‘He always had a smile on his face and he truly loved supporting his kids at Westlake.’

Meanwhile, Georgia State Dean Nancy Kropf described AnnMari as a ‘beloved and admired member of the faculty.’


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