It is with great sadness that the Florida Atlantic University track and field team announces the passing of FAU head softball coach, former women’s golf head coach, and multiple Hall of Famer Joan Joyce at the age of 81.
“This is a very sad loss for the FAU family. Joan is a true sports legend and we are grateful for the 28 years she has spent here, where she has established the best personal and professional conduct for our student-athletes ,” said FAU President John Kelly. “Joan’s legacy will live on in college and across the country through her inspiring generations of young women who play softball and golf – and excel in those areas.”
Joyce was involved in the sport from the age of eight until her recent death. In her 28th season as head coach at FAU, she is the only coach who knows about the program. She served as head coach of the Owls women’s golf team for 18 years (1996-2014).
“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Coach Joyce,” said FAU Vice President and Athletic Director Brian White. “Joan was one of the pillars that built FAU Athletics. She was a legend in many ways and left a legacy at FAU, and beyond that, it was second to none. Athlete.”
While at FAU, Joyce set a record of 1002-674-1 as head softball coach. She has led FAU to 11 conference championships, 11 NCAA playoff championships, and was named Conference Coach of the Year eight times.
Among her many accomplishments, including 20 Hall of Fame inductions, national recognition in multiple sports, and entry into the Guinness Book of World Records, Joyce’s ability to tell and teach about the sport she loves is her greatest impact. Perhaps one of her most famous moments was beating baseball Hall of Famer Ted Williams in front of 17,000 people.
Joan Joyce (18 August 1940 – 26 March 2022) left: sister Janis Joyce; brother Joseph Joyce and his wife Virginia (Ginny); niece Bridget Joyce Wright and her husband Russ, and Meghan Joyce Bolesta and her husband Michael; and two great-nieces, Morgan and Brooke, and two grand-nieces of Joseph and Patrick.
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