Roll of Honor

Robin M. Zang-Broxterman

Robin M. Zang-Broxterman

  • Captain
  • Colerain Township Department of Fire & EMS
  • Ohio
  • Age: 37
  • Year of Death: 2008

Robin was never the biggest‚ but she was daring and very competitive. An accomplished artist and champion speed skater‚ she enjoyed softball‚ soccer‚ and loved riding Roscoe through the woods. Family gatherings‚ Sunday dinners‚ Disney vacations‚ and family reunions provide many cherished memories. We will always treasure Easter‚ our last family meal together the week before she died. Robin stuffed 400 eggs‚ some with broccoli as a joke.

Robin’s passion for the fire service was exceeded only by her devotion to her girls‚ Courtney (8) and Sierra (10). She was their soccer coach‚ room mother‚ riding instructor and involved in all their activities.

The first inkling that Robin was good at saving lives came at age twelve. While all the adults were ducking‚ Robin threw herself in front of a toddler about to be struck by a baseball. The parents in the stands that day knew she was a hero in the making. It was her compassion and caring for people that prompted her to become a firefighter. She began her career as a D.O.D. firefighter/HAZMAT tech for Fernald and attained the rank of emergency chief.

A 17-year veteran‚ Robin was Colerain’s first female fire captain. Her crew received the Ohio Star of Life and other accolades for their actions saving lives. She earned degrees in fire science technology and fire safety engineering at University of Cincinnati. She wrote curriculum for Delmar’s fire instructor text and adjunct faculty at Cincinnati State College and Great Oaks Institute. She was a member of Local 3915. Robin was enrolled at the National Fire Academy‚ but died prior to attending. Her class placed her helmet on her seat‚ carried her picture‚ and elected her president.

Robin was engaged to marry Green Township Firefighter Donald Patterson. Both vowed never to marry again‚ but their 20-year friendship turned to love when they both realized they were destined to forever be ‘soul mates.’ Their dreams came to an abrupt end during a catastrophic collapse at the house fire on Squirrels Nest Lane‚ April 4‚ 2008.

Robin was proud to be a Colerain Township fire captain. She embraced the rewards of being a firefighter – love of children‚ community admiration‚ and the sense of brotherhood within the firehouse. Robin truly lived life to the fullest. Her contagious smile‚ generosity and selflessness‚ always raised our spirits.

Robin died doing what she swore to do – protect property‚ save lives‚ and serve her community. Robin’s life will continue to inspire us‚ cause us to search for the best in ourselves‚ and remind us of what we can become.

Memorial Wall

  1. Capt. Broxterman, Your legacy is impressive and inspirational. I’m sorry for your family that the job ended your life. Your memory is serving to change culture, enhance safety and lead our future members in best practices of firefighting. I’m presenting your LODD to a group of future fire service leaders in Meridian, Idaho at the Officer’s Development Program this week. I’m so grateful for your service and sacrifice and owe my continued safety and ability to serve to you and your crew. God bless Robin.

    – Capt. Freddie Van Middendorp
  • (will not be published)