AU Loses Oldest Living Basketball Player

Redondo Beach, Calif.--Frank H. DuBose, who was Auburn's oldest living basketball player at 100 years of age, died Jan. 29th following a brief illness.

A star player for Auburn in the late 1920s who also played football, he is considered one of the top players of the pre World War II of Auburn basketball.

The family will be bringing back his ashes to Auburn April 22 to be laid to rest next to his wife, Caroline, and son, Chip, at a graveside service in Pine Hill Cemetary.

DuBose was born March 10, 1905, in Tuskegee, Ala., and grew up in Macon, Ga., and played basketball at Auburn University from 1927-29 where he was an All-Southern Conference center and earned his degree in 1929. He was inducted into the Auburn Basketball Hall of Honor in 1986 and was honored again this year as the school celebrates its Basketball Centennial.

DuBose was a high school teacher and coach until called to duty in the U.S. Army in April 1941. He served in the U.S. and Korea, leaving active duty in 1948, as a Lt. Colonel. He resumed his teaching career in the South Bay in the Industrial Arts Departments of Redondo Union High and Mira Costa and helped open Aviation High. He retired in 1970.

DuBose was an active member of the First United Methodist Church in Redondo for 57 years. He married his college sweetheart, Caroline Drake, and they celebrated 72 years of marriage before her death in 1998. A bench on the Strand in Manhattan Beach at 17th Street celebrates their 70th wedding anniversary.

Frank DuBose is shown last year at his home in California.

He is survived by two daughters, Frances Johnson and Polly Pitsker, and a son, Frank H. DuBose Jr. and was preceded in death by a son, Edwin (Chip) DuBose. There are 10 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren, who with spouses and other family and friends all gathered last March for a gala 100th birthday party.

Friends are invited to a memorial service March 12, 2006, at 3 pm at the First United Methodist Church, 243 South Broadway, Redondo Beach, CA 90277. In lieu of flowers, the family asks donations to be made to The First United Methodist Church of Redondo Beach.

It was quite unusual for a student in those days to have been married while in college (July 19 after his freshman year). DuBose was a little older than his soon-to-be wife, an Auburn native who was among the few women in school. As he said, he had lots of competition. He was on his own financially, though helped by some scholarship money. He worked hard and long for the power company located under Langdon Hall that served both campus and town.

DuBose climbed poles, read meters, did repairs and turned off the campus and town lights at midnight. He also supervised the pool for Coach Wilbur Hutsell in the summer. Along with that, he played football and basketball and captained the basketball team as a senior in 1929. He served as a cadet commander of the ROTC, was class president and student superintendent of the Methodist Sunday School. He was also a member of Spades and Sigma Nu.

DuBose and his future wife met at the basketball gym where she played for the Auburn women's team. Caroline Drake DuBose was named one of 100 Distinguished Women Graduates of Auburn. The current Alumni Center is built over her family home and her uncle was the long-time college physician for whom the old infirmary was named. She was also related to the Samfords and was named for William Samford's wife, Caroline Elizabeth.

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