Joyce Westerman grew up on a farm in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin. As a kid, she cleaned the barn, picked vegetables, and helped her father cut down trees. But what she really loved to do was play baseball. Joyce played ball at recess and with friends whenever she could. She even joined her aunt’s adult softball team when she was only twelve.
As Joyce got older, she went to work at a factory in Kenosha. But when World War II broke out, she got a chance to try out for the All American Girls Professional Baseball League. Women from all over the country signed up to show off their skills. Only a few were good enough, and Joyce was one of them. For eight years, Joyce travelled around the United Stated playing ball, winning the league championship in her last season.
This addition to the Badger Biographies series for young readers tells the story of a woman who lived her dream of becoming a professional athlete. In a time when women had few opportunities for careers, and next to none in professional sports, Joyce and her teammates showed that women have what it takes.