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James Elmer Boyd, Jr. was born January 23, 2023, in Chicago, IL to his parents James E. Boyd, Sr. and Margie Delois Young-Boyd. He was the only son and the fourth child born of five children. James accepted Christ as his Lord and Savior during his early teenage years and was baptized at Antioch Missionary Baptist Church in East Chicago, IN under the leadership of Rev. Julius Scruggs.
He was affectionately known as “Joe Boyd” after his family relocated to East Chicago, IN to the New Addition Community Area in 1972. James attended elementary and middle school in Chicago, IL. He attended East Chicago Roosevelt High School. During his high school years, James was a Fierce Golden Glove Champion Boxer, which made his mother so proud. He earned the nickname “TKO” after knocking out his opponents and their teeth. He later graduated with the class of 1976, a “Rough Rider” graduate.
James was known for his infectious smile. He inherited his handsomeness from his father. His generous spirit and charismatic personality attracted girl endlessly throughout his life.
James attended Indiana State University in Terre Haute, IN. After college, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served one year before being honorably discharged. He returned home and on January 11, 1982, he welcomed to the world his first child, his son, James Boyd, III. After the birth of his son, James continued to expand his knowledge and enrolled in Ivy Tech Community College. He followed in his mother’s footsteps, and he mastered Culinary Arts. He accomplished the highest level of Executive Chef and was employed with East Chicago Marina, Phil Smidt Seafood and Steak Restaurant in Hammond, IN and finally Tri-City Mental Health in East Chicago, where he worked as a Food Service Supervisor.
Later, James relocated to South Bend, IN where he fell in love and married Shawn Lane for 22 years. In October of 2019, he began his battle with third stage lung cancer. As his health began to decline, James returned home to East Chicago so that he could be cared for with love and affection from his baby sister, his devoted brother-in-law, and his entire family. James was surrounded by his loving family that accommodated all his wants, needs, and requests during his last day of his life. James was accommodating and loving to his nieces and nephews until the day he died. He loved them unconditionally and it showed. He valued the bond he shared with his family.
James enjoyed fishing. He was introduced to fishing in his primary years by his favorite aunt, Josephine, who he loved and adored. Horticulture was his second passion. He was blessed with a green thumb and gardening skills. He enjoyed gardening up until his health failed. He also loved to read. James always strived to gain knowledge. He was opinionated and passionate man.
He did it HIS way!
He was a true warrior as he fought relentlessly and even though his faith was tested, James never lost hope and never gave up.
James E. Boyd, Jr. passed away Wednesday, September 13, 2023, at St. Catherine Hospital in East Chicago, IN. He was 66.
James is preceded in death by his parents James E. Boyd, Sr., and Margie Delois Young-Boyd; stepfather Charles Wingate; sister Wilma Jean Norman; great nephews Jalen Prince Coles and Kelvin E. Norwood; great niece Oshun Coles; four maternal aunts, three maternal uncles and 12 great aunts and cousin Jeffrey Johnson.
He leaves to cherish his precious memories of his life, love and legacy his wife, Shawn Boyd; son James O. Boyd, III; granddaughter Janiah Semaj; grandsons James L. Boyd, IV and Jayden Boyd; three sisters, the oldest and the matriarch of the Young and Dowell family, Lois Young Johnson of Chicago, IL, Pamela Boyd of Bryan, TX and his loving, caring and devoted caregiver, his baby sister, Sheila Raynale (Garrick) Boyd-Coles, whom he loved and adored; brother-in-law, Garrick Anthony Coles, whom he bonded with in high school and continued their friendship until he passed away; 18 nephews; six great nephews; eight great-great nephews; 13 nieces, three great-great nieces; special cousins Douglas Young, Michael Young, and Phillip Young; special friends Andrea Jones and Charlene Cobb and a host of other cousins from the young and Dowell family, other relatives and friends.