Robin’s Blueberries

In October 2005, Robin Smith and her husband Tom were watching the nightly news as the anchor talked about her involvement with Relay for Life.  The report gave Robin, who had been diagnosed with breast cancer several months earlier, an idea of a way to be remembered after she was gone.

A few days later, she asked Tom if they could grow blueberries and give a portion of the proceeds to Relay for Life.  Tom agreed and started preparing the field for planting.  In December, Robin, Tom, and their niece planted 500 small, bare root blueberry stock.

By summer 2006, Robin’s cancer had returned and had spread to her bones.  She no longer had the strength or energy to help out with her blueberry plants, which were now lush with foliage and beginning to grow.  She felt like her dreams we gone and her desire to create a way to be remembered started to fade.  That was, until Robin and a group of ladies birthed the vision of a walk that would raise money for patients receiving cancer treatment at Cleveland Regional Medical Center.

Robin began to feel that her dream was coming to life again, and easily convinced Tom that a portion of the proceeds from the sale of the blueberries should go to Walk for Hope, which helps only local cancer patients and their families with a variety of needs.

By summer of 2009, the berries were finally ready for harvest, but Robin’s cancer had returned for the third time and she couldn’t help pick them. She lost her battle with cancer on October 1, but left a legacy with the Walk for Hope that lives on today.

Her loving husband Tom now tends the 500 blueberry plants, which are maturing nicely and fruiting reliably each spring.  The grass between the rows is neatly manicured, and other than applying a little fertilizer, Tom lets Mother Nature handle the rest.  Robin’s Blueberries are never sprayed with pesticides – they’re fresh, wholesome and delicious.  Look for them at Foothills Farmers’ Market during late May through June.


  • Robin's Blueberries
  • Thomas Smith
  • 1930 Red Road
  • Shelby, NC 28152
  • 704-406-9076 or 704-477-1157

About The Author