William Carson Ouzts
Mr. Ouzts died Monday, December 31, 2007. Born July 2, 1912, in Columbia, he was the oldest son of the late William Pierce and Flora Kay Ouzts. He attended Columbia High School, where he was on the baseball and football teams. Mr. Ouzts received an AB degree from the University of South Carolina in 1929, and a law degree (LLB) in 1935. While at USC, he played baseball as a pitcher and was Captain in 1933. Thereafter, he played one year of professional baseball with Asheville of the Piedmont League. In 1941, Bill became the Public Address Announcer for the Carolina Football games and continued to 1984.
Mr. Ouzts was admitted to the South Carolina Bar in June 1935, and practiced law in Columbia until 1987, at which time he continued to practice part time.
Bill was a veteran of WW II in the U.S. Navy as a Lt. (jg). He served in the Armed Guard and was honorably discharged in 1945. After wartime service he became active in Veterans Organizations and was appointed Service Officer by the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S., Department of S.C. in 1945, and served until his retirement in 1987. He was also Commander of VFW Post 641 in 1946-47, and served as Chairman of the National Service and Welfare Committee for seven years.
Mr. Ouzts was very active in civic and community activities. Topping the list, would be his work in Lionism. He was a member of the Columbia Lions Club since 1945, serving as Secretary-Treasurer from 1948 to 1984, and as President from 1985 - 1986. He was a member of the Board of Directors of Lions Clubs International, 1971 - 1973. Other communities activities as a Board Member are the South Carolina Association of the Blind; Crippled Children Society; receiving the SPOTTY Award (Special Person of the Year) Chamber of Commerce, 1971; member of the Liaison Committee Fort Jackson-City of Columbia; member of the Board of Directors and Steering Committee, Bi-Centennial Committee, City of Columbia, 1984-86; and the first male president of a PTA in Columbia. He was currently serving as a City of Columbia representative with the Richland-Lexington Airport Commission.
Mr. Ouzts was first elected a member of Columbia City Council in 1956, and retired after 34 years; was elected Mayor Pro-Tempore in 1966, and retired after 24 years; served for six years as the City Appointee to the Board of Directors of Richland School District One.
Bill had been a member of the Shandon United Methodist Church since 1945, serving as Chairman of the Building Finance Committee in 1949; Chairman of the Board of Trustees; member of the Official Board; and over 30 years as Teacher of the Wesley Fellowship Adult Sunday School Class.
Surviving are his wife of 35 years, Beneva Black; two children, Carolyn O. Mayhew of West Columbia and Elaine O. Martin of Raleigh, N.C.; three stepchildren, Cherry Wall, Tara Whitfield and Charlie Key; six grandchildren; eight stepgrandchildren; and 16 great-grandchildren. He was married first in 1935, to the former Louise Davis, who died in 1970. He was predeceased by a brother, Kenneth K. Ouzts.
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