February 15, 1944 ~ May 5, 2020

Born in: Pine Bush, New York
Resided in: Pleasanton, California

Joyce Sorensen Welch passed away on May 5, 2020 from complications of metastatic melanoma.  She was born in Pine Bush, NY on February 15, 1944 to parents Hazel and William Sorensen.  She spent her formative years in Pine Bush and graduated in 1965 with a degree in English from the State University of New York at Oneonta. Following graduation, she moved to California and earned her teaching credential from U.C. Berkeley. She then spent 33 years with the Mt. Diablo Unified School District, sharing her love of literature with countless high school students.

Joyce met her husband, Edward, in 1968. They married in February 1969 and raised two sons, Christopher and Jeremy, in Pleasanton where she lived for over 50 years until her death.  After retiring in 2006, she shared her educational expertise as a member of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Schools. She enjoyed traveling around the world, golfing, cooking, and spending time with her four grandchildren. One of her favorite activities was planning a special birthday experience for each grandchild.

Joyce is survived by Edward; Christopher; daughter-in-law Carrie; Jeremy; daughter-in-law Caty; grandchildren Savannah, Tyler, Connor and Caroline; and her sister, Gerry Piche of Pine Bush, NY.

A celebration of Joyce’s life will be held at a future date.  In lieu of flowers, please make donations in memory of Joyce to the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson Health.

You can donate online at: https://giving.jefferson.edu/giving-guide/centers-institutes/sidney-kimmel-cancer-center/give.htmlPlease select the “in memory tribute” designation and enter “Cutaneous Melanoma Program and Research Fundunder “additional notes”.

Checks can be made payable to Jefferson, note in memory of Joyce Welch in the memo line, and mail to: Office of Institutional Advancement, 125 South 9th Street, Suite 600, Philadelphia, PA 19107.

Memories Timeline


  1. CandleJoyce was a wonderful woman who was so very proud of her family. The love and respect she shared with Ed was passed on to each of her boys and they to their families. Her grandchildren were her pride and joy and she shared stories of all of their accomplishments.
    We will miss her terribly but we will always listen for her laugh on the golf course.


    Linda and Ian Simpson

  2. Dear Ed and family,

    Sending our deepest sympathies as you navigate this difficult time.

    I have very fond memories of Joyce helping a few of us as we prepared for our first big trip to Africa. She was such a great source of travel planning and packing guidance.

    She and I spent many Sunday’s trying out the same golf driver before making our big purchase. She always teased me with a big laugh if I got to the club first to test the driver :). I am sure I will think of Joyce over and over again when I tee off. She was a very special woman. I am grateful I knew her briefly when we lived in Pleasanton.

    We will keep you all in our thoughts and prayers.
    Bridget and Doug Ross

  3. Joyce was always the light of the Castlettes and telling the funniest stories. I had great respect for her and know she lived her life happily with family and friends. I will miss her dearly!

  4. Joyce’s smile and laugh brightened everywhere she went. She will be missed, but not forgotten.

  5. CandleMy deepest condolences to Joyce’s family. I was her student many years ago and enjoyed seeing all of her pictures she would post of her fabulous trips.

    May your memories bring you comfort during this difficult time,
    Julie France

  6. CandleDear Ed and Family,

    My sincere condolences to you during this very difficult time.

    Mrs. Welch was such a dear friend, colleague, and teacher of mine. From her being my teacher at College Park, to hiring me for my first teaching job at College Park, to our seven years of teaching next door to one another, her wonderful guidance and mentorship she provided to me, I will never forget this wonderful, amazing, and kind woman!

    She was always so proud of her family and may your memories of her bring you comfort.

    Forever in my heart.

    Steven France

  7. CandleWe so enjoyed being around Joyce… her contagious laugh and entertaining stories.
    We are grateful for the times we spent with Joyce including Truckee golf weeks, hanging out in Cabo, catching up at friends homes and at Castlewood wine events. We enjoyed hearing about all of her great travels with her great love, Ed.

    She will be so missed by all and especially by her loving family. Our heartfelt condolences to you.

  8. Joyce was a force for cheerfulness and energy whenever I saw her. Always enjoyed playing a round of golf with Joyce and Ed, whether at CCC or trips to Tahoe. She will be missed.


Sign the Guestbook, Light a Candle

Sign the Guestbook