Joseph Hindelang Profile Photo
1945 Joseph 2024

Joseph Hindelang

November 7, 1945 — February 17, 2024

Princeton, NJ


Joseph J. Hindelang, 78, died surrounded by his family on February 17, 2024, at Temple University

Hospital. He was born November 7, 1945, in Philadelphia, the son of Jean Ami and Caroline Margaret

(Grutzmacher). Joe attended Mayfair Elementary School, graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School,

and received the Cliveden Award as Philadelphia’s most outstanding high school athlete in 1963.

Following graduation, Joe attended Temple University on a basketball scholarship. He also played

baseball for the Owls and was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in 1966 and the New York Yankees in

1967. After two years in the minor leagues, Joe sustained a career ending shoulder injury. He majored in

business at Temple and had a Master’s degree in physical education. Joe became a teacher and coach

first at Chestnut Hill Academy, then William Penn Charter School, and finally at Malvern Preparatory

School before being named the Head Baseball Coach and Assistant Basketball Coach at the then

Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science from 1978-82. From 1983-1990 he held the same

positions at Lafayette College, in Easton, Pa. In 1991, Joe accepted the position as the Head Baseball

Coach at Penn State University, State College, Pa and held that role until he retired from coaching in

2004. Joe’s accomplishments at Penn State were unparalleled. He is the winningest baseball coach in

Penn State history amassing close to 400 wins.

He was elected to the Lincoln High School Sports Hall of Fame in 1990 and later in 2012 to the

Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame. Joe always told his closest friends that his greatest memory in sports

was defeating the University of North Carolina in two straight games to advance to the NCAA Super

Regional Playoff. Joe would say, “I had never been so calm and relaxed taking the bus ride home after a


Besides coaching, Joe had a tremendous impact on countless young men’s lives. One player stated

“Coach Hindelang taught me more about life than any of my professors and at times more than my

parents. He was the most positive influence in my life and I was so lucky to have him in my life as a

teenager.” He was devoted to his family, and the love and support for his son Joel and other family

members was unwavering.

In 2004, Joe moved to Princeton, NJ, to join his fiancé Margot and completed the University of

Pennsylvania Teacher Certification Program. He worked as a K-8 teacher for the Princeton Junior School

and also worked as a substitute teacher until 2016. He was an amazing teacher and his students were

sad to see him retire. Joe’s hobbies included music, especially Motown, line dancing, horticulture and

animals. He wanted to go to Galapagos and loved elephants as well as his own pets Jackson, Watson

and Fenway. Joe loved living by the water and felt most at peace when he was out on a boat or sailing.

Margot and Joe owned a second home in Ocean City, NJ and in 2017 found a “slice of paradise” in Cape

May Point, NJ.

Joe was a heart failure survivor and received a heart transplant in 2017 from Temple Hospital. Outside of

his coaching and mentorship he will be remembered by most for his kindness, genuine interest in others,

his smile and a love for laughter and life.

Joe is survived by his wife of 19 years, Dr. Margot Putukian, his son Joel (Adessa Flack), sister, Pamela

Williams (Clifford), brother, Clark (Andrea), and 2 grandchildren, Acen and Jet. In addition, Joe is survived

by many cousins, nieces and nephews, as well as special friends James Walker (Sharon), Pierce Albright

(Ann), Sally Caldwell (John O’Donnell) and Molly Armstrong.

A celebration of life will be held at 1:30pm, Thursday, March 14, 2024 at the Princeton University

Chapel, in Princeton, NJ.

 In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the:

World Wildlife Foundation.  1-800-CALL-WWF

Gift of Life. (215) 557-8090

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Joseph Hindelang, please visit our flower store.


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