CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – A man who has mentored, coached, and taught children for much of his life here in Charleston: 95-year-old Oscar “Frizz” Fordham.
Born in 1927, he grew up playing sports at the Avery Institute in Downtown Charleston. He began working for the City of Charleston Recreation Department in 1960. He’s now the city’s longest working employee.
Over the years, he has coached hundreds of kids and still keeps in touch with many of them. Darryl Brown used to play for Coach Frizz. He said that Coach Frizz “has a special talent to reach children [and] people and bring out the best in us.”
“Not only did he love coaching us,” Brown said, “but loved parenting us and mentoring us. And that’s what he still does.”
Even in retirement, Coach Frizz can often be seen cruising the westside of Downtown Charleston on his bike, passing the field named in his honor.
Coach Frizz said that the secret to his success over the years is simple: “walk away from trouble.” That, and treat all the kids the same.
In addition to the many kids in the community that he has mentored, Coach Frizz started a family of his own. He was married for 66 years, raised five children, had 17 grandchildren, and many more great grandchildren.