Frazier on importance of Black History month

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Charlie "The Razor" Frazier, a former Oilers great and current Texans Ambassador, reflected recently on the importance of Black History Month.

EDITOR'S NOTE:The Texans are celebrating Black History Month. In 1926, Negro History Week was launched by Dr. Carter G. Woodson, an historian and educator. He chose the second week of February to celebrate the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. In the 1960s it became Black History Month.

The life of Texans Ambassador Charlie Frazier always has revolved around education. Growing up, he said he loved going to school and learning. After a standout career in track and football at Texas Southern, he spent nearly a decade in the AFL playing wide receiver for the Oilers and Patriots. When his playing days were finished, he coached and taught biology for more than 20 years at Reagan High in Houston. So the educator in Frazier is happy about the celebration of Black History Month.

"It's great, because black kids should know what kind of history they came from," Frazier said. "It's an opportunity to find out what went on long before them. Some of the things that people had to do in order to make them aware of the situation they're in now. I know we equate a lot of it to football and this type of thing, but it's more than that."

Frazier describes himself as "modest," but said he makes it a point to stress the value of learning whenever he's interacted with youngsters.

"I mostly talked about education," Frazier said. "How a good education can lead you to a lot of good things and can take you a long ways. I often use the analogy and say, 'Look at me: I couldn't play football forever.' So I had to do something else. They kind of picked up on that."

{QUOTE}The 1966 Pro Bowler wrapped up his playing days at the start of the 1970's and segued into the college coaching ranks as an assistant, with stops at Tulsa, Rice and ultimately TCU. He settled at Reagan in the 1980's and made a profound impact upon both his students and athletes over the course of that time. Then, as now, Frazier said that the best way to celebrate Black History Month was to bury your nose in a book.

"I try to get them to read as much as they possibly can," Frazier said. "I think that is one mechanism where they can find out so many things that they don't know about Black History. You always hear about Rosa Parks, but there are some other things that happened along the way that they should also know about. You just try to keep that going as much as you possibly can."

Nicknamed "The Razor" during his playing days, Frazier said he is "very proud" of past pupils who have found success both on and off the playing fields, because he feels like he "had a hand in it."

Frazier's life journey has been a full and winding one, and he appreciates the importance of knowing about the past in order to achieve more in the present and future. While he's hesitant in describing his life one way, he's certain when asked to use the adjective that describes it best.

"I don't know if I would call it luck or not," Frazier said with a smile. "I would call it blessed. I've been truly blessed."

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