In Memory of
Robin Kochorek...
August 16, 2007

One of the greatest parts of traveling is the people you meet along the way.

During my bus ride to San Pedro de Atacama in Chile I met two friends who were traveling together – Robin and Lindsey.
Before I knew it, I had new travel buddies.

Robin had been traveling through Africa for a couple months before her friend Lindsey met up with her to travel around
Eastern Europe and South America for the next six months. Robin and Lindsey were friends from college up in Canada. Right
off the bat, any person could tell that they had a rare type of friendship. Even though they had been traveling for months, they
got along as if it was the second day of their trip – they were always having so much fun with each other.

Fast forward to a couple days ago when I just found out that Robin was killed by a black bear while mountain biking with
Lindsey and another friend of theirs just outside of their home in Canada. I am sure many feared for her safety while traveling
around the world. Who would have ever thought that it would be in a place near her home that people would have to fear for
her? In the meantime, the Panorama Mountain Village is taking zero accountability for this – even though they knew there
was an aggressive bear in the area. They didn’t have signs posted anywhere.

I ended up traveling through Bolivia with Robin and Lindsey. I have so many memories of Robin during that week:

  • She was probably the most stylish traveler/backpacker I have ever come across. She could put a scarf on her head and
    she would look amazing. She could mix several necklaces together and it would look as if they were made to wear with
    one another.

  • There was always a game that she (and Lindsey) could come up with to play – whether it was while we were waiting for
    hours while our car was getting repaired or while it was on a long car ride or while we were stuck one night waiting for
    hours at a restaurant just to get our food.

  • How much she appreciated a great bowl of yogurt and granola in the morning.

  • The rare ability she had to pull off Bolivian legwarmers.

  • Robin appearing to eat a ‘mountain sandwich’ while on the salt flats in Bolivia (clearly, this was just an illusion).

  • Her fun and crazy other ideas of what to do on the salt flats.

  • The amazing yoga headstands she could pull off on salt flats and how long she could stay in the position while the person
    taking the picture was trying to get the exact angle correct.

  • What a sweetheart she was.

  • Her ability to serve as our Spanish translator in Chile and Bolivia.

  • Her silly faces and funny poses in pictures.

  • Listening to her talk about some of her experiences in Africa. I no longer thought of Angelina when I heard ‘Namibia’…I
    thought of Robin.

  • John – their friend who was visiting them from Canada – telling her one evening that she was the only person he knew
    who could look amazing no matter what the situation was (i.e. sleeping, just waking up, etc.).   

Robin is a reminder of what kind of mark a person can leave on other people. She made friends all around the world and,
because of that, people are now mourning her loss around the world. She was a unique, fun, silly, sweet, adventurous, stylin’
girl. I still find it unreal to look at pictures of her and believe that there will never be a ‘next time’ that I see her.

I have attached some links relating to Robin’s death. She will be missed by many. She is also a great example of how a person
has the capability of touching other people’s lives in the world even if it was only being in their presence for the period of a day
(as was the case with some of the people that signed her online guestbook).

I will always cherish the memories I have of her from my trip. I’m just sorry that there weren’t more to come afterwards…

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On our way to the Bolivian salt flats.
Robin biking through the Chilean desert.
On the salt flats.