PACE — Pace resident Amber Robinson was just 18 years old when she lost her life this year while traveling to a Rainbow Family of Living Light gathering. Now one life-long friend wants to share her story.

Stephen Kent met Robinson when he was 16 years old. He said she lived an amazing life, despite her struggle going through the foster care system in Santa Rosa County.

“I met her when she was 14,” Kent said. “When I met her, she was already from a broken family and she started just getting to know people. Actually, she made a lot of friends down here.”

Kent said Robinson became popular with the teens in the area and he couldn’t remember ever seeing her when she wasn’t hanging out with someone.

Kent said that Robinson’s mother had given up custody of Robinson and her two younger siblings and they were split up and placed into foster homes in the area. He said Robinson told him how much she disliked being in the foster care program, but it didn’t affect her academics.

“Despite all she dealt with… she was always top of her class,” he said. “She was really smart. She had a scholarship to go to college.”

Kent said Robinson's passion was art and she wanted to major in it.

After Robinson’s death, Kent and friends held a memorial for her in Navarre. Kent said it was at that point he realized just how many people Robinson had touched while she was alive.   

“There were people who came out that I never even met,” he said. “We had people from three or four different states who wanted to come.”

Kent said her goal was to graduate college and get her two siblings out of foster care. She was so kind hearted, he said, and wanted to help people.

“She meant a lot to us,” he said. “I want the community to know her name and what kind of person she was.”

Kent said if Robinson could give some advice to people it would probably be to always live your dreams and don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something. As for Kent, his advice for young adults who want to go to out into the world is this:

“Don’t go alone,” he said. “Have a plan. Always know the risk that you’re taking and the environment you’re in.”

Kent said people should always go with someone trustworthy. Don’t ever travel with someone new.

Robinson was killed in Kentucky while traveling to the Rainbow Family of Living Light gathering. 

Kent said Robinson's ashes will be spread in California later this year.