Boating, pickleball keep Underwood floating

Joanne Underwood is this year’s cover model.


For years, Joanne Underwood knew what retirement would be like. She just had to be patient and wait until the age of 65.

Underwood’s parents lived in Lamplighter Village in Melbourne. During visits from her native Ohio, Woodward knew Brevard County was where she eventually wanted to retire.

“It’s close to the beach and I love boating,’’ said the 68-year-old Underwood, who moved to  Florida three years ago and now lives in Lamp-lighter Village. “There’s a ton of water and things to explore. There’s no boating in (Youngstown) Ohio. That’s why it’s such a passion for me now. 
I joined the Freedom Boat Club and we’ve gone boating in several locations around the state.’’

Underwood also loves to play pickleball, but  boating clearly has become her biggest passion.

“I love the water in all ways,’’ Underwood said.

“I really knew I was missing something. It’s so beautiful out there with the manatees and  dolphins.’’

Underwood was a nurse before becoming a patient liaison. She then learned the administra-tive side of the business, which led to managing a retirement home for 25 years.

As an avid walker for years, Underwood did not have a difficult transition when she was intro-duced to pickleball at Lamplighter Village.

She also works out regularly at the gym.

“I wasn’t really a tennis player like so many pick-leball players,’’ Underwood said. “Pickleball makes me feel alive, it’s outdoors and it works my body.’’

Underwood has two children, a daughter who lives in Indian Harbour Beach and a son who lives in Ohio. Her son and daughter-in-law have one child, a grandchild that she adores. 

“I also really love the Brevard Zoo,’’ Underwood said. “There are so many things I like about nature. I really love the sunsets while I’m sitting on  
my porch.’’