Uluru, Australia (Ayers Rock)
Uluru, Australia (Ayers Rock)

Pamela Susan Cain

February 19, 1950 - April 13, 2024

Pamela Susan Cain had a sly sense of humor and a kind and generous heart. She had a passion for reading science fiction and playing fantasy adventure games. She loved being outdoors. Pam traveled the world until a long series of physical problems including knee surgery, strokes and two bouts of ovarian cancer limited her mobility and finally ended her life on April 13, 2024 — way too soon.

Pam was born February 19, 1950 in Twin Falls, Idaho, the fourth of eight children of Mary Elizabeth Bolton. She was raised in Seattle from a very early age, and lived there most of her life.  She was a proud graduate of Franklin High School. She worked as a computer operator, first at the University of Washington and then for the Seattle Police Department. She didn’t especially like being in charge, but she was good at it, especially mentoring newer employees. In fact, at UW she trained Richard, became his lifelong partner and eventually married him. At SPD, where she worked and advanced in Information Technology, she would, sweetly, tell police officers if they touched her computers she would break their fingers. She was half-kidding. In retirement Pam traveled and traveled, continued to read and game, did the “lyrics” (dates and most photo text) for the annual, and much sought after, Fatima’s calendar,  and was the entire Accounting Department for Fatima’s. It was under her influence that Fatima’s NEVER managed to make any money!

Pamela and Richard didn’t have children of their own but Pam played a major role as an aunt, helping her sister Cassandra the “World Famous Author and Historian” (Pam’s own words, of course), and her sister-in-law and dear friend Marva when they were each first-time moms raising Linnea and David respectively.

When Richard was acquired he came with Sharon, who became the couple’s closest friend and traveling companion. Pam visited an amazing number of countries. The list reads like an atlas: England, Ireland and Wales; Portugal, Spain, Gibraltar and Morocco; Israel, Jordan and Egypt; Costa Rica, Ecuador, Peru, Machu Picchu, and the Galapagos Islands; Australia; India, Bhutan and Nepal; and Russia, Siberia and Mongolia. They toured Africa three times. Pam especially enjoyed seeing birds and animals in the wild. On safaris, she had a knack for predicting what creature they would encounter next. Native guides would express doubt, saying that particular animal was not in the area, only to have Pam’s prediction come true the same day.

She devoured books and had a special fondness for dragons and unicorns, which she called “horny horses.” And of course, she loved to play Dungeons and Dragons and other adventure games.

No picture of Pam would be complete without glimpses of her humor. When she, Richard and Sharon were ready to kayak down the Wenatchee River, Pam was outfitted to a comical degree with so many layers of clothes and flotation devices that she made a joke of it, repeatedly batting her eyes at Richard and blowing him kisses. One time when they were skiing, Pam lost her poles and skis and went pinwheeling down a steep slope. It looked bad. A Ski Patrol member hurried over and asked if she was OK, she wiped snow and ice from one eye and  replied, “Oh, that was fun. Let’s do it again.”

Other times were less dramatic. If they were driving down the road to another adventure and Richard missed the turnoff, Pam would quietly say, “Bye-by, Mount Rainier.” Or she might see something from the car, and chuckle but keep it to herself. She could find humor in almost anything.

One of her very last outings was to Greenlake. By then she was wheelchair-bound and didn’t particularly want to leave the house. But she did, gradually savoring the scenery and fresh air and ending up at Duke’s, where she topped her meal with marionberry cobbler and ice cream. She was glad she made the effort to get out and hoped to do it again.

Pam and Richard knew each other for about 47 years and were married for 39. Early in their relationship, they had a small number of what he remembers as serious arguments. After that, their only disagreements were over how many of those serious arguments they had way back when. It was two or three; they couldn’t decide.

Pam is survived by Richard, Sharon and Marva; her siblings John, Michael, Gregory, Linda and Marilee; her nieces Linnea, Kristina, Shelly, and Lizzie, and nephews David and Christopher; and proudly claimed to her many grandnieces and nephews that she wasn’t just grand, she was great. She was preceded in death by her oldest and youngest sisters, Cassandra (“WFA&H”) and Deborah. Pam made deep and valued friendships, and in her love, always stood ready to help. Among them, but far from a complete list, were Lisa, Barbara, Debbie, Joanne, Bill, Carol, Terrie, Sonja, Jody, Peirce and Tina.  And not to be overlooked, Glenn, who also happens to be Pam’s brother-in-law, and spouse to the “WFA&H”, and a doggone fine writer in his own right.

Pam’s remains will be composted by Recompose, allowing her molecules to mingle with the soil in the gardens of friends and family and along the trail, wherever she would have loved to roam.

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About Recompose

Recompose is a licensed, full-service, green funeral home in Seattle offering human composting. As the first human composting company in the world, we are a trusted leader in ecological death care. We are Seattle’s only human composting provider and serve clients across the U.S.

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4 S. Idaho St, Seattle, WA 98134
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Recompose acknowledges we make our lives and livelihoods on the lands of the Coast Salish People, specifically the Duwamish People. We honor with gratitude the Duwamish People past and present, the land itself, and the Duwamish Tribe. Colonization is an active, persistent process. Indigenous communities continue to be resilient in protecting their ecological and cultural lifeways and deathways despite ongoing oppression. Recompose respects, shares, and supports this commitment to climate healing and environmental justice. Join Recompose in contributing to Real Rent Duwamish.