COLUMBIA - Claudia Walker McCain, who spent her life working on behalf of young people in Columbia through church and school, died Tuesday as the result of injuries suffered in a traffic accident. She was 56.
Mrs. McCain was the wife of Dr. Richard McCain, the mother of three, Sara Ann, Richard and Matthew. She was the daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Robert C. Walker. She was born in Anderson and raised in Columbia where she lived fully through her family, church and the community, and through many friendships forged over the years.
She was a lifelong member of First Presbyterian Church where she devoted countless hours to teaching, study and worship. She died after leaving Sunday night service at the church.
Her children attended Ben Lippen School and as a result, Mrs. McCain was a committed, driving presence at the school. She led or joined in many aspects of school life over the years including drama and sports. Her home was the center of activity revolving around her family, church, children, friends and her faith.
A 1972 graduate of A.C. Flora High School, she attended Converse College, and graduated from the University of South Carolina in 1976. For several years, she taught at Heathwood Hall Episcopal School in Columbia, and later worked in the church office at First Presbyterian.
Dr. and Mrs. McCain had known one another since their school years and, in 1989, they married.
With the birth of their children, she began a continuing involvement with their lives and those of many friends and classmates. She was director of the Ben Lippen Middle School Drama Club for which she organized an annual spring play. She spent countless hours scouring the community for props and costumes for the production. Her theatrical personality was perfect for the role.
She served as "Team Mom" for her children's sports activities, and volunteered as class mother for each of her children. She enjoyed working for the Columbia Garden Club where she served as chaplain, and joined in outreach activities for the elderly, and for children.
At First Presbyterian, she was involved for years with the seventh grade Sunday school class. She served as a deacon in the church, and was active in Presbyterian women.
The family would like you to know that Claudia had some unusual God-given gifts including the wonderful gift of "mercy." She valued relationships over everything else and was always willing to pray, counsel and encourage others. She loved her Lord, she loved her husband and children, extended family, the body of Christ, and those beyond. She was a Proverbs 31:10-31 woman, which includes, among other thoughts: "But a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates." Claudia lives today in Heaven. The family wishes to thank all those involved in her recent care. May God bless you richly.
Mrs. McCain and her family donated her organs for transplant to recipients around the country.
In addition to her husband and children, Mrs. McCain is survived by Ellen Walker Pearson of Florence, Robert C. Walker Jr. of Richmond, Va., Wade (Deedi) Walker Coleman of Columbia, Ann McCain of Columbia, Spruce McCain of Denmark, S.C., Kathy McCain Lee of Atlanta, and Pam McCain Pearce of Charleston; and many nieces and nephews.
A celebration of her life will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, February 26, 2011, at First Presbyterian Church, 1324 Marion St., in Columbia. Burial will follow in the churchyard, after which friends may greet the family during a reception held in the Atrium of Jackson Hall. Elders and deacons of First Presbyterian Church are invited to serve as honorary pallbearers. Shives Funeral Home is assisting the family.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to Ben Lippen School Capital Campaign, 7401 Monticello Road, Columbia, SC 29203, or to First Presbyterian Church World Missionaries Fund, 1324 Marion St, Columbia, SC 29201. ShivesFuneralHome.com 803.754.6290