Florence Griffith Joyner

"you never fail, until you stop trying"

Biographical Information

  • Born in Los Angeles, California, on December 21, 1959
  • Seventh of Eleven kids
  • Married fellow athlete Al Joyner
  • Has a daughter,Mary Joyner
  • Died September 21, 1998

Coming of Age

Florence Griffith Joyner's rough backrough helped her to become the champion runner she was.

Delorez Florence Griffith was born in Los Angeles, California, on December 21, 1959. When she was four when her parents divoreced. Her Almost bankrupt mom and all 10 of her siblings moved to LA."We didnt know how poor we were , we were rich as a family" stated Florence Griffith Joyner. Her mom was very strict, they were not allowed to watch TV on the weekdays and also they had weekly bible meetings.When she was seven she joined the Sugar Ray youth foundation and began starting sports which included running. It was obivous that she had talent in running when she would beat the boys. She practiced running around parks and pretty much anywhere. Even though her dad did not live with her she still went to go visit him in Cal. Mohave Desert when ever she could. by the time she was 14 she won the Jesse Owens National Youth Games.She attended Jordan High School and was on the school 's track and field team.Later on she went to California State University at Northridge but could not afford it so she got a job as a bank teller then transferred to UCLA. Once there she became she became a NCAA champion in 1982 with a victory in the 200-meter event. Coached by Bob Kersee, Joyner made her Olympic debut in 1984.

Her past experiences helped shape her future in becoming a track star.


She grew up with her mother struggling to be able to pay for things, that taught her that not everything comes easy like in movies. That helped her when she felt like giving up and quitting when she was tired , if she did she would not have been the champion runner she was. Also when her parents got divorced she learned that not everything works out. That helped her by trying new things when the other stuff didn't go as planned. Her childhood molded her into the tough, and fast runner she was.

Florence Joyner WR (still held) 100 Meter Run

100 M Flo Jo Joyner WR 10.49

Work cited

Works Cited

"Florence Joyner." biograpy. N.p., n.d. Web. 7 Apr. 2014. <http://www.biography.com/people/florence-joyner-9542053>.

Florence Joyner Track and Field Star. N.p.: Franklin Watts, 1992. Print.

Longman, Jere. "Florence Griffith Joyner,38, Chapmpion Sprinter, Is Dead." The New York Times: n. pag. The New York Times. Web. 11 Apr. 2014. <http://www.nytimes.com/1998/09/22/sports/florence-griffith-joyner-38-champion-sprinter-is-dead.html>.