In the pre-1960 era, Joyce Turner was the
poster child for women’s high school sports. During this time in
Stoneham, a female athlete had two choices: field hockey in the fall and
intramural half-court basketball in the winter. Joyce played both and
was named a Field Hockey captain her senior year. According to Frank
(Tiger) Burns, “SHS Field Hockey team has not been able to play a game
at home because they have not got a field suitable for their opponents.
They were refused use of Recreation Park because their sneakers would
tear up the sod, weeds, and goldenrod that passes for sod.” The Field
Hockey field finally opened at Recreation Park in the fall of 1959.
In the 1959 opening game at the new field against archrival Woburn,
Joyce scored all 3 goals for the first win of the season. Then against
Saugus, Joyce scored both goals to secure a 2-2 tie. Against Malden,
Joyce scored the only goal. Joyce could be constantly heard running up
and down the field screaming, “Play your position, play your position!”
The Field Hockey team had a winning season with a 3-1-1 record.
Joyce played intramural basketball and was captain both junior and
senior year. Her junior year, Joyce scored 10 points in a 40-22 rout in
tournament play; in her senior year, Joyce led her team in scoring to
another tournament win 39-13.
In club sports, Joyce was a feared
competitor. As a former classmate so fondly recalls, “I was terrified to
play against Joyce. What feared most was Joyce hitting the ball right at
me. It gave me nightmares.” It was much easier being on her team.
Joyce is still active in sports. She is playing in a senior slow
pitch softball league competing and traveling locally and nationally in
After graduation from Stoneham High School,
Joyce served in the U.S. Marine Corps. and is a Vietnam War veteran. She
moved to Miami in 1963 and spent many years working for American
Airlines. She is currently a massage therapist residing in Mt. Dora,