EUGENE, Ore. — Friends and family are remembering the life and accomplishments of Charlie Warren. The 73-year-old lost his battle with cancer five days ago.
Warren was a former University of Oregon basketball star and coach. But, people say his legacy will be his impact on kids.
Charlie Warren’s friends say that he was a humble and big-hearted man with a great demeanor and always a man of his word. As a former All-American basketball star and coach, Warren continued his legacy in sports through kids in the community.
“This community is really going to miss him,” said Warren’s friend Jim Torrey.
Warren gave generously to youth throughout Eugene because he believed kids deserved a chance, a chance to play and just have fun.
“He didn’t worry about whether they were going to be Major League Baseball players or NBA basketball players. He wanted every kid to be able to play,” Torrey said.
Warren, a former basketball player and coach at the UO, died July 5 after battling cancer.
His friends say he was giving and had a passion for helping kids. The two qualities together made a big impact.
“Many gifts that he has given in the past that have remained anonymous, and I would say over my four years of being the executive director at Kidsports, over a thousand children have probably played a sport for free because of Charles Warren,” said Bev Smith, Kidsports Executive Director.
And that’s just the kind of man warren was. Torrey, former Eugene mayor and close friend, says Warren never put himself in the limelight even though many areas in Eugene exist because of him.
“Eevery once in a while, drive around town and you’ll see one of these parks and that’s Charles…wouldn’t be there without him,” Torrey said.
Smith and Torrey both say that although Warren is gone, his legacy will live on.
“He’s just a strong community member that has made our community better because of his presence in it,” Smith said.
Torrey says Warren was a great father, husband, and friend, and he’ll miss the Thursday coffee and donut get-togethers in Warren’s office.
“I don’t know where we’re going to meet from now on, but we’ll have to keep doing it and we’ll keep that chair open,” Torrey said.
Warren was the president of Kidsports in 1969 and always remained an active member. Smith says the community will miss him and his legacy will live on through kids that he’s helped.