They were champions, All-Americans and future coaches. They were also future doctors, lawyers, company presidents, working-class heroes, fathers, mothers, and friends. Over a volleyball coaching career rooted in four decades, Charlie Brande impacted them all.
Even after he packed up his office at UC Irvine — shifting to a new role as a fundraiser for his alma mater having retired as women’s coach after nine seasons in order to more closely follow his daughter’s high school experience — Brande impacts his former players still.
The remnants of the countless life lessons he drilled into them, just as painstakingly as he schooled them on the sport’s fundamentals, continue to insinuate themselves into his former athletes’ daily routines, as tangible as a creaky knee or a balky shoulder.