The Daily Tar Heel

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Monday June 27th

Students, alumni remember Woollen security guard through stories and art

"Mr. Fred" at his retirement party in 2016. Photo courtesy of Randy Young.
Buy Photos "Mr. Fred" at his retirement party in 2016. Photo courtesy of Randy Young.

Retired University security guard Fred Moore, known as “Mr. Fred,” died Friday at the age of 74. He is remembered not only for his position at UNC, but also the cartoons that he drew for those he met.

Students, alumni and colleagues expressed their condolences on a Facebook post, made by alumna Charity Watkins, which announced his death in the "Overheard at UNC" Facebook group. 

Watkins worked with Moore in Woollen Gym in 2006 while she completed her undergraduate degree. She continued to visit him during graduate school.

She said she remembers doing crossword puzzles with him, as well as hearing about the love he had for his family during their frequent conversations. 

“He always had this smile on his face and he loved to tell jokes,” she said. “Every student that he encountered he welcomed with a warm heart and open arms.”

Even when Moore was not feeling his best, Watkins said he still exuded happiness and kindness toward everyone he met. The thing she remembers the most about him is how he always greeted everyone. 

“He was someone who I think represented what students would want to feel coming to UNC and coming to a new campus,” she said. “He was that not only to students but to his coworkers.”

Watkins is not the only student Moore influenced during his time at UNC. Alumna Beth Williard met Moore while she worked at the front desk of the Student Recreation Center administrative office. 

Over the three years she worked there, Williard shared conversations with him during his rounds on duty.

“It was really nice to have a friendly face around and to hear encouraging words,” she said. “UNC is such a big place. It’s nice to have someone outside of your immediate friend circle. It genuinely felt like he cared how I was doing.”

Moore was known for his mascot-centered drawings that he gave to students and coworkers. In a 2010 interview, he told The Daily Tar Heel that he took requests from students and at one point, had a waitlist of 15 requests. 

Included in his cartoon recipients is Watkins, who still has the picture he drew of her catching the bus. He also drew a picture for Williard, who still cherishes her drawing. 

“Right before I graduated, he did a picture of Ramses in the lab with a lab coat that said, ‘Good luck in your future as a chemist,” Williard said. “It was nice to have someone to lift your spirits.”

Alumni and co-workers continue to share their memories of Mr. Fred on Facebook to keep his memory alive at UNC.

Watkins said that she hopes his family and friends are able to rejoice in his legacy at UNC. 

Randy Young, Media Relations manager for UNC Police, worked with Mr. Fred for decades and attended his retirement party in 2016. 

Young said he didn't have Moore's exact start date at UNC, but said in an email that "many here can remember him over at least the past two decades, perhaps 1996 or even farther back."

“He was just as much as a figure on this campus just as much as some of the iconic things he drew,” he said.

Young said that Mr. Fred poured his heart into everything he drew and made a point to interact with the students on campus daily.

“The people that don’t have his artwork saw his smile, and they can carry that with them,” he said. “He was a great role model for a positive attitude and a sense of community.”


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