Ronald J. Bain

Ronald J. Bain, the ultimate nice guy who loved to make others laugh, died April 16, 2023, peacefully and surrounded by family at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, following a brief but valiant battle with lung cancer. He was 60. A lifelong resident of Chester, he was a 1980 graduate of Chester High School. Ron was 22 when he began working at Tom Jones Family Restaurant in Brookhaven, where he made lasting friendships. If you ever ate there, Ron likely entertained you with a corny joke, or you may have just noticed the guy with the ginger hair and toothpick in the corner of his mouth dash by your table as he happily performed his duties. “He was so full of energy,” said Donna Bain, Ron’s sister with whom he made his home. “And he loved to laugh at his own jokes.” Noting that walking was her brother’s primary means of transportation, she said he never complained about it, adding, “He would always laugh and say, “I have my two legs.’ “Ron found his riches in his work, his friends and his family, Donna said. A creature of habit, she added with a chuckle, “My brother was stuck in the 70s, and he was happy to be there.” Her brother had a talent for drawing. Though he had stopped, she said he talked about getting back into it. He was especially proud of his rendering of the Tom Jones building. Describing Ron as “a beloved member of our team … a truly remarkable individual who poured his heart and soul into his work,” Eleni and Vasileios Andriopoulos and Antonia Repici, his bosses at Tom Jones, said his loss has left a void in their restaurant. “He was a dedicated employee and a super hard worker. His jokes always put a smile on everyone’s face. He walked to work every day – rain or shine and even in the snow,” his bosses said. “He will always be remembered as a shining example of what it means to be a dedicated employee and cherished friend.” For his 60th birthday last June 10, niece Kelly Bain said family and friends surprised Ron with a party at Chester Park. To her, he was an uncle, a brother and a father figure rolled into one. Her uncle loved Six Flags Great Adventure, and her memories of when the family would go to the amusement park together are among her happiest. “We would load up a couple cars,” she said. “He would pay for the whole family.” Ron was a fan of Phillies baseball, Flyers hockey and Buffalo Bills football teams. He enjoyed playing Frisbee golf. He loved rock music, especially Led Zeppelin. In his last hours at the hospital, his family played his favorite, “Stairway to Heaven,” holding his hand and telling him how much he was loved, Jessica Rodriguez, one of his nieces, said. “I was always called his favorite niece,” Jessica said. “And everybody knew that.” To the younger members of his family, Ron was a rock star – amusing them on his guitar and keyboards he played with more confidence and enthusiasm than talent. “He was the life of every party,” said John Pearson, who was friends with Ron for 46 years. “Our parents grew up together.” Added John, “He was a teenager in a 60-year-old body. He never stressed. He was always happy. He lived day by day. He never got angry. I don’t think he had a mean bone in his body.” Like John, longtime friend Goddard Dejos considered Ron a brother. All three were part of a larger core of friends, many of whom have passed on.“My kids called him Uncle Ron,” Goddard said. “We grew up together in Chester. We hung out, partied, went camping and to concerts,” Goddard continued. “He was a very outgoing person.” Ron worked hard and was serious about his job, but he also enjoyed his down time, his friends said. Some beers and Gray Goose were his go-to beverages, but they said he never indulged on a work night. His friends said Ron loved to barbecue, regardless of the weather. They said Ron was planning to retire at age 62. “I don’t think he had any plans. He just wanted to relax,” Goddard said. Ron was predeceased by his parents, Edward and Barbara Bain; two brothers, David Bain and Eddie Harding; and his grandmother, Arlene Harding. In addition to Donna, Kelly and Jessica, he is survived by a brother, Robert “Bob” Harding and his wife, Lucy; nieces, Nicole Tyler and Jill Harding; a nephew, Robert “Bob” Harding Jr.; greatnieces, Destiny Haley, Hanazia Tyler, Haniyah Tyler and Emani Williams; a great- great- niece, Isla Montgomery; a special cousin, Holly Ott; and many beloved friends.
His funeral service will be 8 p.m. Wednesday, with a two-hour viewing beginning at 6 p.m., at the Bateman-Allen Funeral Home, 4220 Edgmont Ave., Brookhaven, PA, 19015. Burial will be private. Online condolences can be sent via www.batemanallenfuneralhome.com