Joan Hodges, widow of Los Angeles Dodgers Hall of Famer Gil Hodges, passed away Saturday night after a long battle with illness. The couple got married in December 1948, and had three children, Gil Jr., Irene, Cynthia and Barbara.
Gil Hodges died in 1972 at the age of 47. Joan was 10 days from celebrating her 96th birthday at the time of passing. Joan lived in the same Brooklyn home she once shared with Gil during his playing career.
“We are thankful that Joan was able to see Gil inducted into the Hall of Fame in July,” New York Mets president Sandy Alderson said in a statement.
“That meant so much to her and the entire Mets and Hodges family. She was a true baseball fan and still followed her two favorite teams, the Mets and Dodgers. We send our condolences to her daughters, Irene and Cindy, her son Gil Jr. and the rest of the Hodges family.”
Irene had the honor of giving the speech at Cooperstown this past July when Hodges was posthumously inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
“Today, I am especially happy for my mother,” Irene said in closing her speech. “When the call came from the Hall of Fame and I heard, ‘This is Jane Forbes Clark and it is my honor,’ I began sobbing probably as much as I did when I lost my father. I was so beyond happy for him.
“And even thrilled that my mom at 95 would be able to hear this news. My mom is watching today from our home in Brooklyn. And to my dad, I’d love you so much and I miss you every day. I know you’re smiling from heaven now with our sister Barbara, but we miss unbelievably and without a doubt I know you’re celebrating with Tom and the Boys of Summer.”
Hodges’ career with Dodgers
Hodges spent 16 of 18 seasons playing for Brooklyn or Los Angeles before finishing his career with two years as a member of the Mets. Hodges later went on to manage the 1969 “Miracle Mets” to a World Series title.
That added to winning a championship as a player with the 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers, the first in franchise history.
Hodges played in 2,071 games and batted .273/.359/.487 with 295 doubles, 370 home runs and 1,274 RBI. He was named to seven consecutive All-Star Games from 1949-55, and was part of Dodgers teams that won a National League pennant in 1947, 1949, 1952, 1953, 1955 and 1956.
Hodges is second on Dodgers all-time lists in home runs (361) and RBI (1,254); third in total bases (3,357), extra-base hits (703) and walks (925); fourth in games played (2,006) and fifth in runs scored (1,088). He also is the Dodgers’ all-time leader in games played at first base with 1,851.
Once Gold Glove Awards started being presented for the first time in 1957, Hodges won three in a row.
The Dodgers retired No. 14 for Hodges and added him to the Dodger Stadium Ring of Honor this past June.
Have you subscribed to the Dodger Blue YouTube channel? Be sure to ring the notification bell to watch player interviews, participate in shows and giveaways, and stay up to date on all Dodgers news and rumors!