Curtis Oden was the fifth child born to the late Thomas W. Oden Sr. and Juanita Pascal Oden on September 18, 1954, in Birmingham, Alabama.
He accepted Christ as his Savior at an early age, uniting with the 25th Avenue Baptist Church under the pastorate of the late Rev. D. R. Scarbrough. He later joined Bethel Baptist Church, Pratt City.
Curtis was a product of the Birmingham School System. He attended Lewis Elementary and graduated from J.H. Phillips High School in 1973. He went on to further his education by attending Southern Business Jr. College, where he was a member of the Vulcan basketball team, and he also attended Rust College in Holly Springs, MS.
Curtis recognized the importance of the life lessons taught through sports. He dedicated his life to developing players while instilling values such as, discipline, teamwork, and selflessness. Curtis used sports to show his love for his family and the community and established long-lasting bonds with his sons, brother-in-law, coaching peers and his countless former players.
Curtis has successfully coached basketball at every level, from youth/recreational leagues, middle school, high school, junior college, and professionally. He was considered an ambassador for Birmingham basketball and a pioneer in introducing and promoting competitive AAU basketball in the Birmingham area. He was an assistant coach at Phillips High School for a number of years and served as a head coach at John Carroll High School, Jess Lanier High, Carver High, Southern Junior College, Lawson State Community College, and the Women’s National Basketball League teams Birmingham Power and Chicago Blaze.
Curtis leaves to cherish his many memories: two sons: Micheal and Desmond (Brigelle) Oden; one grandson: Peyton Oden; two granddaughters: Karlyn and Kaylor Oden; three sisters: Priscilla Oden, Geraldine (Alvin) Moore, and Denise Oden, all of Birmingham; one brother: Thomas (Mary) Oden Jr., of New Orleans, LA, and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, friends and former players.