IN LOVING MEMORY OF
WILLIE B. BOYD
JULY 15, 1914 - JUNE 13, 2001
Mr. Boyd had many outstanding qualities, but the one that definitely outshines the others to me is his unfailing expression of gratitude. Even after his mind began to fail him, due to a short-term memory loss, he never forgot to give thanks before a meal and he always complimented the cook after the meal. Due to his memory loss, the cook sometimes received this compliment repeatedly, which was quite easy to overlook. Since I did a lot of his cooking during the last nine years of his life, I was the recipient of his gratitude. I also got the credit when we would visit another relative who did the cooking.
Willie B's father came to the U.S. from Ireland with his parents when his father was only two years old. They survived the hurricane of December, 1875, finally arriving in Galveston, TX. Willie B. was the third oldest child of Oliver F. Boyd, Jr. and Nannie Gleason Boyd. His grandparents, Oliver F. Boyd, Sr. and Janie Rebecka Daugherty (Graham) lived with them. They were called A-dai and Muddie. Willie B.’s mother, Nannie died when he was 17 years old. He married Aneida Lyles on his birthday in 1934. They were the parents of four children, Evonne, Patsy, William B. Jr. (Billy) and Jerry.
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He had to work hard to make a living for his family and he provided well for them. He was very good at hunting and he loved to fish – providing many delicious meals with his catch. Farming was a major part of his life. He taught his sons at an early age how to hunt and how to raise crops to provide food for the table.
His philosophy for living was very simple – treat other people how you want to be treated and work to make this world a better place to live, which he did to the best of his ability. He played a major role as a surveyor when the Cypress Black Bayou was built in northwest Louisiana. He was very proud of his part in this project.
The family will never forget his most repeated phrase, which he used at the most appropriate time, or inappropriate if it applied to you. He would first ask, “Do you know what the worst disease is in the world?” And we would say, “what?” His answer: “running off at the mouth.” This would be enough to change the subject or to quiet the “mouthing” for a while.
In the years of his declining health, he spent many hours outside in the swing. He was very observant of everything. He could identify all the fowls of the air and he knew the woods like the back of his hand. He could predict the weather simply by looking at the skies. He loved his family and they loved him back.