Richard C. Bain Jr.

Published 8:18 pm Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Richard C. Bain Jr., 74, of Campobello passed away Sunday, January 10, 2010 at his home.

Richard was born in New York City on October 7, 1935. He graduated from the Asheville School in North Carolina. Richard, also known as Dick to his family and friends in the West, received a scholarship to Duke University and went on to complete his masters degree in civil engineering at Yale University. He spent the majority of his adult life on the West Coast, a pioneer in the fledgling field of environmental engineering. He was involved in problem solving the clean up strategy for the oil spill in the San Diego Bay and was a lifelong proponent of conservation and ecology long before it was fashionable. He worked in San Francisco for the health department and then for Brown and Caldwell Engineering firm. He was promoted to vice president, to manage their Seattle office in 1973, and relocated with his family including infant daughter Margery (now deceased) to Vashon Island, Washington. He continued this work in Seattle until the mid 1980s when he relocated to Ellensburg Washington. He then commenced a consultancy practice primarily addressing farmers irrigation, pollution and salmon hatchery issues in Eastern Washington until his retirement in early 2001. He was recognized at a state and federal level for his professional contributions to the area of water pollution and waste management.

Dick referred to himself as a Luddite and often commented he was born in the wrong century. He designed and built four homes incorporating features of English Tudor design. One of these homes is the former Swan Inn of Vashon Island. The Swan Inn operated as a bed and breakfast in the 1980s and again in the early 1990s. The site of many weddings; it won several awards and was featured in periodicals. While on Vashon Island Dick renewed his early interest in music and joined the Celtic Players, increasing his confidence and proficiency as a fiddler. He went on to compete and place in numerous competitions around the USA, most recently in October 2009 winning back his title of Georgia State Senior Fiddler Champion!

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A keen traveler, post retirement he maintained a home in New Zealand. In 2003 he realized his dream of owning a log cabin in the Smoky Mountains. He then married and settled in Campobello, continuing to spend time in the Southern hemisphere until illness prevented travel.

He is survived by his wife, Margaret Clark Bain, and daughter Miranda Bain Jarman and her husband Jeff, of Queensland, Australia. His mother, Margery Bain Franklin of Tryon, NC. Sister Gale Ironside of Landrum, brother Peter D. Bain of Hendersonville, NC. Three stepchildren, Ann Moore of Rutherfordton, N.C., Sid Clark of Durham, N.C., and Lisa Clark of San Diego, California. Two step-grandchildren, Nicole Moore and Dean Moore, and his faithful dog Toby.

Funeral services will be held on Sunday, January 17, 2010 at 2 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church in Rutherfordton. The Reverend Tonya Hill will officiate. In lieu of flower donation should be made to Hospice of the Carolina Foothills, 130 Forest Glen Drive, Columbus, N.C. 28722 or First United Methodist Church in Rutherfordton,264 N. Main Street, Rutherfordton, N.C. 28139 .

An online register book is available at

Thos. Shepherd & Son Funeral Directors and Cremation Memorial Center, Hendersonville is in charge of the arrangements.