In Memory of Clayton Francis Boyce
July 25, 1925 - September 4th, 2019
This website is dedicated to the loving memory of Clayton Francis Boyce
Pictured above as children, L-to-R, June Bernice, Georgina Beryl, John Nathan, and 1st cousin, Clayton Francis Boyce.
Photo "courtesy of Katherine (Kitty) Mildred Beryl Wade-Roberts."
A heartfelt and loving post from Grandson Hamilton Boyce
Thursday September 5th, 2019
Yesterday morning my grandfather Clayton passed on over to the other side. Him and I bonded over country music, woodworking, computers, and history. I seem to have inherited my attention-to-detail and grumpiness from him. Despite his sometimes apparent emotional distance, he told me that he loved me often.
I am grateful that Amy and I got to spend time with him in his last days and it seems likely that his last word spoken may have been my name, when we first arrived on our most recent visit. He was very peaceful in his home and listening to a compilation of gospel country music as sang by Hank, Dolly, Loretta and many other greats.
His last major woodworking project was helping me build a cabinet for my vinyl collection, which somehow stretched out over several months and I am thankful for that because it is the most one-on-one time we ever spent together. He liked putting many coats of finish on each board and sanding and buffing between coats. While coats dried he would tell me about his experience visiting the Grand Ole Opry with my grandmother or he would field my questions about our family history.
He wrote an in-depth family history with help from my grandmother Doris which I believe they started in the 1980s and finally completed around three years ago. It goes back generations to each ancestor and their journey as immigrants to the United States all the way up through present day. He told me for years that he just needed to figure out how to end it and then it would be done. After I bugged him about it (and probably other family members as well) he finally emailed out the completed version which is over 500 pages long and very thoroughly researched, referencing primary sources whenever possible. I regretfully have still not finished reading it but am very grateful that this document exists as a record of our family history and of my grandparents lives.
He was the first person to tell me about this brand new search engine called Google and he was impressively computer literate for someone who was born in the 20s.
He was proud of his service in the military and served on a ship during World War II. He kept great documentation through photo albums and stayed connected with his fellow servicemen late into life.
He would sometimes let me borrow his pickup truck and I would sometimes help him move heavy items in the truck. I recall one time after I gave him a hand, he thanked me and I told him that I owed him one from the last time he let me borrow the truck. He said that I didn't owe him anything from before but that we could just have the kind of relationship where we help each other out when the other needed it without any debts on either side. That was the best lesson he taught me and I think about it often.
There is much more to Clayton but I wanted to share a few personal memories while they are fresh in my mind.
The last time we had a really good conversation, last year when I visited him on his birthday, before his hearing really started to go, we talked about country music, life, and relationships. He told me how much he missed his wife. Ultimately he was ready to be reunited with her and I am thankful that he no longer has his ailing body to give him pain and that he went peacefully, at an old age.
Huge thanks to my dad Steve and his siblings John and Susan for putting so much of their time and lives into taking care of both parents over the last number of years. May everyone get the quality of care and respect that you gave them both.
Love to Clayton and all of you out there.