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On this date in 1912, Horace Rain, a Black doctor and community activist, was born.
He was was one of three sons born in Atlanta to Igolias and Elizabeth Rains. The family moved to Columbus, OH, when Horace was a baby. He completed his education in public schools in Columbus and attended Wilberforce University on a track scholarship. He received his B.S. degree in 1938, then taught physical education at Lincoln University, Jefferson City, MO., before being drafted into the Army in 1941.
After serving in Europe and the Southwest Pacific during World War II, he enrolled at Meharry Medical College in 1949. Rains married Frances McHie, with whom he eventually had two children. In 1953, he received his M.D. degree and began an internship at Los Angeles County General Hospital and UCLA. In 1954, they entered private medical and family practice in Long Beach, CA. It was during these years that, as the second Black family in their southern California neighborhood, they experienced continuous racism for years. The family suffered such severe vandalism to their property that Rains armed himself, but he and his wife decided to stay and fight for their rights.
Before beginning his own business as a physician, Rains was the first Black on staff at St. Mary’s Long Beach Memorial and Long Beach Community Hospitals. Active during the 20th century American Civil Rights movement, Rains was president of the Long Beach NAACP, chairman of the United Civil Rights Committee, and was “Man of the Year” of the Long Beach American Legion in 1965. In 1988, he retired from his practice due to health issues.
He became active in many organizations, such as The Wilberforce Alumni Association, the Belmont Shore Lions Club, and the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. Rains were involved with the Long Beach City Planning Commission and the City of Hope. His nephew is Benjamin Mchie, founder of African American Registry®. Horace Rains, M.D., died on June 9, 1998, in Long Beach, California.