Joe Joyce with his wife, Jane. Kevin Joyce
sales and antique shops across the
country, his son said.
“It’s a tale of my father’s journey
in life and his collecting,” Kevin said.
“The bar is a living testament.”
Three years after opening JJ Bubbles,
Joyce quit drinking for good,
spending the better part of the following
39 years operating a watering hole
he never drank from.
Employees remembered Joyce for
his generosity, and for creating a safe
haven for patrons.
“He was more than just a boss, he
was family to many of us,” said Ross
Procaccio, who has worked at JJ Bubbles
for six years.
But, “Being a 40 year-plus bar
owner is such a small part of what Joe
contributed to the neighborhood,”
the bartender said. “If you ever needed
help with anything, he was always
COURIER L 20 IFE, APRIL 24-30, 2020
there for you. He would give the shirt
off his back to anyone.”
Joyce was heavily involved in community
events, including — but not
limited to — the local competitive darts
scene, the Brooklyn Shamrocks Gaelic
Football Club and the Special Olympics
Polar Plunge on Staten Island.
“Anybody who needed anything, he
would have fundraisers for them,” his
wife, Jane Joyce said.
Right now, the fate of JJ Bubbles
remains up in the air while the family
deals with more pressing matters.
However, the Joyces say they plan on
having a service for their patriarch at
St. Anselm’s Church, and a subsequent
celebration of his life once it is safe to
“This is a truly devastating loss to
the community as a whole,” Procaccio
said. “He’ll be greatly missed by so
Additional reporting by Meaghan
Continued from page 1
rushed him to a nearby hospital.
Bass’ condition initially worsened
and he was placed on a ventilator,
Gets said. But after two
weeks, his symptoms appeared to
“He didn’t have a fever for three
or four days,” Gets said. “Then it
was rapid decline.”
Bass died shortly after. He
didn’t have any pre-existing conditions,
his friends said.
Bass is one of more than 9,000
healthcare workers around the
country who has been diagnosed
with COVID-19, and one of the
hundreds who has died from the
virus. While no one knows exactly
how Bass contracted the virus, coworkers
assume he caught it from
a patient at Coney Island Hospital
— and suspect that the lack
of personal protective equipment
(PPE) at the facility could have
played a role in him contracting
the highly-contagious respitory
“My assumption is that it was
directly related to bad PPE policy,”
said one coworker who spoke
on the condition of anonymity. “If
you come into the ER, it’s in the
Bass is survived by his wife of
20 years, his 19-year-old daughter,
and his 17-year-old son — none of
whom were allowed to visit him
after his admission to the hospital.
Bass’ loved ones remember
him as a reliable confidant who
brought warmth to his friends’
and family’s lives.
“He had this amazing, open,
cheerful personality,” said Alex
Beylinson, Bass’ close friend who
sent him to the hospital. “He was
always laughing and smiling and
had a million jokes to tell … Everyone
Gets noted Bass’ extraordinarily
generous spirit, and recalled
a time the physician assistant
went out of his way to look
after and care for Gets’ sick relative.
“My wife’s uncle who lives in
New Jersey, he was visiting someone
in Brooklyn. He was unconscious
and he was sent to Staten
Island Hospital,” he said. “I called
Alex, and he came in his free
Multiple online fundraisers
have been set up to raise money
for Bass’ family after his death.
Within hours, they had raised
tens of thousands of dollars, Beylinson
“In one day they collected
$50,000,” he said. “There were
hundred and hundreds of people
that knew him, and that speaks
All three fundraisers have
raised more than $74,000 dollars
as of April 20.
Continued from page 1