JOYCE, TERRY (February 12, 1929 - October 28, 2009) was a prominent Cleveland labor leader and Irish community leader who was a driving force behind the move of the West Side Irish American Club to Olmsted Township. Born in Mewillian in Achill Parish, County Mayo, Ireland, to Michael and Mary (Gallagher) Joyce, Joyce was one of eight children and maintained close family ties in Achill Parish all his life. He worked in English farms as a young man before coming to Cleveland in 1957. An uncle on the board of LABORER’S LOCAL 310, Ned Gallagher, found construction work for him when he first arrived, on such projects as the Cleveland Convention Center and the FORD MOTOR CO. Cleveland Engine Plant.
As Business Agent for Local 310 from 1965 to 1991, Joyce started Local 310’s pension program. He told members “We’ll make sure of wages, you’d better make sure of your work.” DENNIS J. KUCINICH, former Mayor of Cleveland and member of the United States House of Representatives, commented that, “because of [Joyce’s] leadership, Laborers 310 of Cleveland grew to become one of the most effective labor unions in the country.” The well-connected Joyce was Chair of the AFL-CIO’s committee for political endorsements. Local political candidates included many friends and even relatives from Joyce’s home parish in Ireland, such as his cousin, Judge John T. Patton of Cuyahoga Common Pleas Court. Terry Joyce’s son, Terence P. Joyce, followed in his father’s footsteps as Local 310 Business Agent, President of the Cleveland Building and Construction Trades Council, and chair of AFL-CIO’s endorsement committee.
Terry Joyce was also active in the city’s Irish-American Community. He served as president of the WEST SIDE IRISH AMERICAN CLUB and championed its move from cramped quarters in Cleveland to a spacious campus in Olmsted Township. He was the voice of the Cleveland Saint Patrick’s Day Parade at the reviewing stand for twenty-five years and was honored as Parade Grand Marshal in 1992. Joyce founded the local chapter of the Irish National Caucus to promote peace and justice in Northern Ireland, calling on US government leaders to urge the British government to give the people of Ireland “the opportunity to decide their own destiny” after the death of Irish Republican Army member and hunger striker Bobby Sands. Joyce was a 1999 recipient of the Irish American Archives Society’s WALKS OF LIFE AWARD.
Terry Joyce met his wife Bridget (Jennings) Joyce at the West Side IA Club. They were married for 45 years at the time of his death and had 3 children: Maureen Joyce, Eileen Joyce O'Donnell, and Terence P. Joyce. He is buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in BROOK PARK, OH.
Daniel Brennan and David Patrick Ryan