J. Howard Boulton Jr.

J. Howard Boulton Jr.
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A Manly Gentleman



J. Howard Boulton Jr. was a gentleman with the common touch, an outsider who made others feel at home, a man who bound together two worlds — of Venezuela and Iceland — with the greatest of ease.

Mr. Boulton, 29, grew up in Caracas, the son of a prominent Venezuelan family, and spent summers working on his father's cattle farm. He attended boarding school and college in the United States and settled in New York, taking a job at Eurobrokers. A colleague introduced him to Vigdis Ragnarsson, a New Yorker whose family came from Iceland. They married in 1998.

"He had this wonderful balance of being this manly strong man, who could deal with horses and cars equally, and on the other side this kind, gentlemanly touch," said his father-in-law, Kristjan Ragnarsson.

Mr. Boulton's other great loves were his 11-month-old son, Frederick Thomas, and Formula 1 racing. For Frederick, he would rush home for bath time and wake at 5 a.m. to play with him before work. He would get up just as early for Formula 1 broadcasts from Europe.

There is surely much grief among the farmhands in Venezuela. "They watched him grow up, and were really fond of him," Mrs. Boulton said. "They are beautifully simple people but I'm sure they understand what happened, and the injustice of it."

Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on December 29, 2001.




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