March 27, 2013
FAU Owl Community –
I write today with a heavy heart. We celebrate so much in athletics and have so much to celebrate. And thankfully it is not often that we are brought together to celebrate a life. Yesterday, Joe Joyce, father of Florida Atlantic head softball and golf coach, passed after a long and fantastic life. Mr. Joyce to me, but better known to the softball players as JOE has been a fixture at softball games for the last 15 years. He also was a regular at men’s and women’s basketball games.
Joe was an avid sports fan who read the newspaper from cover to cover. It was common for him to get on to me that nothing was in the paper about softball. His question was always a good one. Why can’t they just list it on the schedule page? I never had an answer.
I once witnessed a player ask him what she was doing wrong. At the ripe old age of 85, he reviewed her last four or five at bats and told her what to correct. She got a hit in every at bat in the following game. All I could think about was this is how Joan became such a great athlete. Someone taught her how to make adjustments.
The other thing I see in Coach is Joe’s kindness. Kindness also exudes from Joey and Ginny, Coach Joyce’s brother and sister-in-law. The duo are a regular each spring in the concession stand and have stepped up to help this year even more than normal with a sidelining injury to their concession stand partner, Mrs. Mary.
With Joe’s passing, we will pause to celebrate the lives he has touched at FAU and the lives that he will continue to touch through his daughter, Joan. Joan was on hand last night for the softball team’s late inning heroics and will be at today’s softball double header versus North Texas.
See Joe – we got the schedule in so that folks can come out and watch the games.