An exceptional life of accomplishment and recognition came to an end when, on Dec. 17, 2013, the Honorable Tyrie Alvis Boyer joined his beloved wife Betty in heaven.
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The life of Tyrie Boyer personified the American dream. He was born at home in Williston, Sept.10, 1924, to Mary Ethel Strickland and Alton Gordon Boyer, both of Williston. His parents were subsistence farmers who lived off the land.
In search of employment during the Great Depression, the Boyers moved to Jacksonville where Tyrie graduated from Robert E. Lee High School in 1942. While finishing high school, he simultaneously worked as an auto mechanic at Duval Motor Company until joining the U.S. Navy shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Throughout the war, he was a flight engineer on PB2Y transport planes in the Pacific Theatre. It was during a stopover at Alameda, Calif., that Tyrie met Elizabeth Everett Gale at a USO dance. They married in 1945, and were happy together for 66 years.
The couple left California for Jacksonville at the end of World War II, and Tyrie returned to Duval Motor Company. In 1949, he finally succumbed to Betty's constant urging to apply for the GI Bill and to use the nest egg they had been building to open their own service garage in order to go to college.
Tyrie, Betty, and their two oldest children moved to the family farm property in Williston, and he commuted to the University of Florida. While working three jobs and adding another child to the family, Tyrie earned his B.A. and law degrees in four and a half years, graduating at the top of his class. He thrived in the university environment and was tapped into Florida Blue Key Leadership Organization, awarded a Phi Beta Kappa key, as well as Order of Coif, the highest honor a law student can achieve.
Upon graduation in 1954, the family moved to Jacksonville, and Tyrie joined the law firm of Crawford and May. He became a partner, but decided to run for public office and was elected to the Civil Court of Record where he served until Gov. Ferris Bryant promoted him to the Circuit Court in 1963. After returning to private practice, Judge Boyer accepted a 1972 appointment by Gov. Ruben Askew to serve on the First District Court of Appeal. For two of the seven years that he spent at the DCA, Judge Boyer was Chief Judge, and he served on the Supreme Court of Florida by special assignment.
An icon of the Jacksonville legal community, Judge Boyer was continuously A-V rated by Martindale-Hubbell and was designated as a Pre-Eminent Lawyer. In 1979, he established the law firm of Boyer, Tanzler, Blackburn and Boyer where he remained until he tried his last case and won a multi-million dollar verdict at the age of 85 in 2010.
Always striving for excellence and the general good, Judge Boyer's legal achievements included: Board of Directors of Duval County Legal Aid Association; Advocate, American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA); recipient of ABOTA 2011 President's Award; charter member of Supreme Court Committee on Standard Jury Instructions, Civil; Chairman, Supreme Court Committee on Standards of Conduct Governing Judges. He was listed in "Leading American Attorneys," 2002; was adjunct professor and on the Board of Advisors at Florida Coastal College of Law. He was a Board Member at the Legal Studies Institute, University of North Florida. In addition, he served on numerous committees of the American Bar Association, and was the recipient of the Jacksonville Bar Association's Ray Erlich Award for professionalism in 2012.
The Tyrie Boyer ethos required "giving back" to Jacksonville and to Florida. Judge Boyer held official positions in the University of Florida Alumni Association, the Jacksonville Area Chamber of Commerce and Committee of 100. He served as Director of Jones College; Chairman of Duval County Hospital Authority, and as a member of Jacksonville-Duval County Council on Elder Affairs. Judge Boyer was active in the Kirby-Smith Camp, Sons of Confederate Veterans and was Judge Advocate General, Second Lieutenant Commander and Commander of that organization. He and Betty rang a bell for the Salvation Army at Christmas, and he actively participated in Safari Club International.
As an avid outdoorsman and big game hunter, Tyrie Boyer traveled the world. However, he became famous in hunting circles when, at age 69, he was attacked, hooked and gouged at his own farm by a crazed deer. In hand to horn combat, he defended his life with a pocket knife, wielded with one hand while the other held onto the deer's antlers. It was literally a fight to the death.
Despite a demanding life full of family, career and community, the highest priority in the life of Tyrie Boyer was his devotion to the Lord Jesus Christ. His lifestyle and outspoken testimony were an inspiration and example to all who knew him. Judge Boyer was a lifelong Methodist, and he taught the first of many Sunday School classes while still a college student.
Tyrie Alvis Boyer was preceded in death by his wife, Elizabeth Everett Gale Boyer. He is survived by their four children: Carol Boyer Knight (Ted), Williston; Tyrie Wm. (Lori,) Jacksonville; Kennedy Gale (MaryLee), Williston; Lee Carlton (Barbara Michelle), Williston. He is also survived by a niece, Colleen Stevens (James), Jacksonville and his brother Gordon (Betty), Jacksonville. Tyrie Boyer was "Papa" to 11 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
On Thursday, Dec.19, visitation with the family will be at Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home, 4115 Hendricks Ave., from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
The Rev. Tony Chance and the Rev. Richard Petrie will lead a Celebration of Life service at First United Methodist Church (225 East Duval St.) on Friday, Dec. 20 at 10:0 a.m. Interment will follow at 2:30 p.m. at Wacahoota United Methodist Church, SR 121, in Williston. A graveside memorial will be conducted by the Honorable Joe Smith.
In lieu of flowers, the Boyer family requests that you honor Tyrie's memory with a charitable gift to the Salvation Army: online at www.salvationarmyusa.org or by mail to Salvation Army, Northeast Florida Command, P.O. Box 52508, Jacksonville, FL 32201-2508.
Arrangements are under the care and direction of Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home, 4115 Hendricks Ave., Jacksonville, FL 32207. (904)346-3808. Words of comfort may be shared with the family at www.hardage-giddenshendricksave.com
Published in Williston Pioneer on Dec. 26, 2013
Arrangements under the direction of:
Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home
4115 Hendricks Ave | Jacksonville, FL 32207 | (904) 346-3808