A quick look around the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason, where some of the best tennis players in the world congregate annually.

Springfield woman who dedicated much of her life to tennis to be honored 

Joyce Rike Engle, a Springfield resident and active member of the community, dedicated many years of her life to service at tennis associations and to the advancement of the sport.

She passed away on July 29 at the age of 71 following a lengthy illness.

Engle will be recognized on Thursday, Aug. 16 from noon to 2 p.m. at the Western & Southern Open tennis tournament in Cincinnati. Her family will be there to celebrate her life accomplishments.

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Engle was a long-time volunteer for United States Tennis Association, her daughter Leann Castillo, director of the National Trail Parks and Recreation District, said. She dedicated 30 years of her life there, “if not more,” Castillo said.

Joyce Rike Engle

Engle also worked with the Ohio Valley Tennis Association as an adult league tennis coordinator for 16 years, she said.

The reception is intended to “remember all those positive things that she has done,” Jim Amick, director of sales and industry relations for the Midwest Section of the USTA said. 

“Be it through tennis, be it through adult tennis, junior tennis, or just obviously everyday walk of life things,” he said.

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Anyone on the grounds is welcome to stop by, talk to Engle’s family and share stories about her, Amick said. 

“She was very involved from a young age,” Castillo said. “She and my dad started playing tennis when my sister and I were young.”

Engle ran local tennis tournaments for children and adults, as well as state and regional tournaments, Castillo said. She worked with her husband David Engle, who was a referee for the tournaments.

“They devoted a lot of time and energy to the associations and the advancement of the game of tennis,” Castillo said.

Castillo said involvement in tennis was a family tradition for Engle. Her family was honored as the USTA’s family of the year in 1994.

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“Our mom and dad continued that and served in many different capacities as employees as well as volunteers who supported tennis,” she said.

Engle would always travel to watch her daughter Deidra Engle play at regional and national championships, Castillo said. “Wherever it might be, she wanted to make sure she was a part of that.”

Engle played tennis for at least 40 years, Castillo said.

“Even while she was sick, she continued to play tennis,” she said. “If she wasn’t playing tennis, she was there watching and enjoying the time she spent with her friends and family that were involved.”

Outside of tennis, Engle served at bible school, helped in the office, and sang in the choir at local churches. She also tutored, volunteered, and was a member of PTO at local schools.

Castillo recalled what mourners said at her mother’s funeral. 

“One thing we heard over and over again was how they moved to this community and she welcomed them and made sure they felt a part of everything; and never felt like an outsider.”

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