Milestones — James R. Fink

James R. Fink

James R. Fink, who grew up in Shelburne, Vt., died tragically in a plane accident on May 5, 2017 in Clearwater, Fla. Jim was piloting a plane when he encountered wind shear just before touchdown.

Jim was born on Nov. 12, 1972 in Stuttgart, Germany. He moved to Shelburne, Vt. with his parents in 1977. He attended Shelburne Village School, Shelburne Middle School, and Champlain Valley Union High School.

In 1994, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering at Union College in Schenectady, N.Y. Jim served as Nuclear Engineer in the U.S. Navy submarine fleet for five years after having graduated from the Navy Nuclear Power School in 1995. He earned an M.B.A. from the University of Rhode Island in 2005. In 2008, he was named Young Engineer of Rhode Island. In 2016, he earned a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University.

Recently, he started his own consulting business in forensic engineering, Kleinholz, Inc.
In 2004, Jim married Nicole Arcand, M.D., and they made their home in Exeter, R.I. They have two daughters, Adalyn and Sydney.

Jim had enormous energy and expended it in multiple pursuits including volleyball, tennis (using his favorite racquet, the “HyperHammer”), biking, skiing, obstacle course construction, and most of all, any activity with his family.

Jim was an incurable prankster and had a well-developed mischievous streak that was enthusiastically deployed on countless unsuspecting targets. He applied his engineering mentality and skills to numerous projects, including building his house, workshop, hot tub, obstacle course, and his approach to life in general.

Jim is survived by his wife, Nicole Arcand, and their daughters, Adalyn and Sydney; his parents, Dr. Theodore and Mrs. Jan Fink; brother Mike, his wife Kelsey, and their infant son Roan; and his sister Kathleen Fink Cheeseman and her husband Gareth. Also surviving him are his parents-in-law, Dr. Alfred and Mrs. Louise Arcand, and Nicole’s siblings, their spouses and many nieces and nephews.

Visiting hours are 4-7pm on Friday, May 12, 2017 at the Potvin-Quinn Funeral Home, 45 Curson St., West Warwick, R.I. 02893.

On Saturday, May 13, 2017 there will be a Celebration of Jim’s Life starting at 11am, followed by lunch at the Quidnessett Country Club, 950 North Quidnessett Road, North Kingston, R.I. 02852.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society ( or March of Dimes.

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