John Elroy Sanford (December 9, 1922 – October 11, 1991), better known by his stage name Redd Foxx, was an American comedian and actor, best known for his starring role on the sitcom Sanford and Son. Foxx was born in St. Louis, Missouri and raised on Chicago's South Side. His mother was half Seminole Indian. His father, an electrician, left his family when Foxx was four years old. Foxx was raised by his mother, his minister, and his grandmother. He briefly attended DuSable High School with future Chicago mayor Harold Washington. In the 1940s, he was an associate of Malcolm Little, later known as Malcolm X. In Malcolm's autobiography, Foxx is referred to as "Chicago Red, the funniest dishwasher on this earth." Foxx earned the nickname due to his reddish hair and complexion. His stage surname was taken from baseball star Jimmie Foxx. During World War II, Foxx dodged the draft by eating half a bar of soap before his physical, a trick that resulted in heart palpitations.
John Elroy Sanford