By Harry Minium
Claude Stafford grew up in South Norfolk, a blue collar area of Chesapeake that when he was a kid, was as segregated as any in America. White South Norfolkians had their own schools and parks, as did African Americans.
Yet Claude didn't see race. All he saw was people, regardless of skin tone or ethnicity. He also had an amazing knack for sizing up people. If you were a good person, he was good to you, to a fault.
He befriended Kenny Easley when he was just eight. Easley would go on to a storied NFL career with the Seattle Seahawks.