Philip H. Boyette Jr.

Philip H. Boyette Jr.

Portsmouth - Philip H. " Flip " Boyette Jr. 93, was a native of Portsmouth. His parents, Ola Mae and Philip H. Boyette Sr., as well as his sister, Peggy Lou Spence, predeceased him. Flip was married to Jackie Madden Boyette who passed in 1988. They had two sons, Chris (P.H. Boyette III) and Steve Boyette, and his wife, Xiaojian; three grandchildren, Amber, Chip (P.H. Boyette, IV), and Adam; and a great grandson, Ellery, Jr. (E.J.).

Flip was a member of Centenary United Methodist Church. He was one of the founders and a charter member of the Ambassadors Club, as well as a member of Elks Lodge # 82, of which he was twice the Exhalted Ruler. He was also a member of the Seaboard Masonic Lodge # 56 for over 50 years.

Flip graduated from Woodrow Wilson High School and then went on to further his education at Virginia Tech, (then known as VPI) where he graduated in 1941. Like many men of his era, he enlisted in the Army during World War II where he attained the rank of Captain, while serving in the Canal Zone of Panama.

Once the war concluded, Flip came back to Portsmouth to begin, what was to be, a very varied business career. He started in the Construction industry by building free standing garages on ' your lot ' for $1,000. He quickly moved into to building starter type homes in Portsmouth, Norfolk, Lynchburg and Roanoke. At roughly the same time, he decided to try his hand in the restaurant business by starting Portsmouth's first Chinese restaurant on High St. He quickly followed this with "Flippo's' Hot dogs, a small restaurant off of Confederate Avenue. To further broaden his scope, he purchased the now defunct Elco Movie Theatre in the Waterview section of Portsmouth and ran any and all of the current Disney films.

At this point in time, Flip decided on a different career path, and with his brother in law Joe Madden, they developed Boyette-Madden Oil Company delivering home heating oil in Tidewater. They also decided to bring the Phillips 66 service stations to the area. At the height of the service station boom, they had 12 locations. Branching out from here, Flip did a joint venture with George T. McLean, to build and develop Portsmouth's first shopping center, Town & Country, which is still in operation in Cradock.

It was here that Flip decided, once again, on a career change and started purchasing any and all property he could get in the Frederick Blvd and Airline Blvd area of Portsmouth, He started by developing and operating the 100 room, Quality Inn Midtown Motel. The family would like to thank the housekeeper/manager, Rosa Grey and her daughter Shirley and son Bobby for their dedicated service there. This also housed Portsmouth's first 24 hour restaurant, The Pancake House which was an extremely busy venue in its day. Across the street, still on Frederick Blvd, he developed the Embers Steak House, an upscale restaurant with Virginia's first salad bar. The family would also like to thank the restaurant manager Eloise Parker for her assistance in this venture. Above the restaurant stood something Flip was extremely proud of. It was the Midtown Club, a private club for members only. It was here where Flip would bring in weekly acts, some local, but mostly nationally known artists. Many big names of the day performed at the Midtown Club. With more property to be developed on Frederick, Flip started two more restaurants, Fishermans Village and The Spaghetti House. Never one to slow down, Flip moved the base of his operations to the Churchland area and along with his sons, went back into the construction business, by building several condo and apartment projects, as well as a Mini-storage and Car Wash. It was here, along with his son Steve, Flip went into the "Foosball" game parlor business by opening three locations in Portsmouth, Suffolk and Hampton. Special thanks go out to Kenny Jolley for his help in this venture.

With Flip entering his eighties and not even considering retirement, he branched out with his two sons again in two entirely different directions. With his eldest son Chris, they designed and built many fine Custom Homes in the Western Branch section of Chesapeake, as well as Northern Suffolk. With his son Steve and business partner Dana Rice, they purchased Hair Clubs for Men with offices in Chesapeake, Washington DC, Charlotte, Raleigh, and Greenville, South Carolina.

Up to the very end it was Flip's strong desire to NEVER stop working. One of his favorite things to do was to come to work each day, sit behind his desk and go over the days game plan. Retirement was a four letter word to Flip.

We would like to express our thanks to Margaret Jicha, who was Flips CFO for over 43 years. No one could have been more loyal and dependable than Margaret.

The family would like to express our appreciation to Virginia Bolling who came into Flips life in 1998 and became the love of his life. She took great care of Flip in all aspects and this will never be forgotten.

A funeral service to celebrate Flip's life will be held at 2 p.m. Tuesday in Loving Funeral Home, Churchland Chapel by Rev. Wayne Carter with Masonic Rites. Burial will follow at Oak Grove Cemetery. The family suggests memorial contributions to Centenary United Methodist Church. Online condolences may be made at

Funeral Home

Loving Funeral Home
3225 Academy Avenue Portsmouth, VA 23703
(757) 484-3373

Published in The Virginian Pilot on Jan. 19, 2014