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Dennis M. Boyle Obituary
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August 19, 2018

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August 19, 2018

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June 24, 2008
Dennis,

you were the most genuinely positive person I ever met and helped me to realize life's promises. I was so bleesed to have you as a friend and i know that you are now truly "On top of the World" I miss you every day
August 18, 2007
I didn't know Dennis Boyle but he certainly was a lucky man. He has an incredible son, Dennis that Im sure he was proud of.
My condolences (better late then never) to his family and close friends. God Bless you all.
January 5, 2002
Eulogy given on December 14, 2001

Standing here as a representative of both Uncle Dennis’ Boyle Family, and McMullen Family, the remarks I have to share tonight are mostly geared toward the latter, conveying some of the feelings shared with me this week by many of the nearly 100 McMullen family members. Trying to weave a series of very personal quotes, along with my own thoughts and emotions, into something even remotely eloquent is a challenge, but am honored to make the attempt. Working with categories that are, what I call my favorite “UNCLE-DENNIS-ISMS”, I hope to incorporate the sentiments of what he means to us, into the words that he lived by every day.

I’m The Luckiest Guy I Know

Last Tuesday marked ten years from the day of my first date with Uncle Dennis’ nephew, Jeremiah. While I can’t pinpoint the first time I met Uncle Dennis, I do know it had to be very early on, as Jere proposed just one month after our first date. Once I met him, Uncle Dennis, that is, I was hooked. From his Super Bowl gambling parties, to the impromptu pizza nights, from singing Karoake, to coming out to cheer on my pathetic softball team and flatter the girls, and eventually, living under the shared roof of the place he called Camelot, he became precious to me long before my real estate career began. Of course, it was Uncle Dennis that brought me to real estate, insisting, over a Roselli’s Pizza, that I had the two biggest assets needed to be successful: I love to look at houses, and I love talking to total strangers. He didn’t know the half of it, and would later go on to suggest that maybe I could use to talk a little less, and of course, he’s right, but you can’t fight nature. I did TRY to be brief when calling his voicemail, and told me he was pleased with my willingness to at least try.
Along with Uncle Bob Zogman, and Eric Cortese, I was the second of the three hybrids who bridged both of Uncle Dennis’ families. It was impossible for me to separate the two Uncle Dennises, and while I don’t think he ever expected me to, I did try. In August of 1999, when I first began working with Uncle Dennis at McMullen, I endeavored to NOT call him “Uncle” at work – keep it professional, don’t embarrass him, I figured. Well, not only was it impossible for me to drop that term of respect and endearment, I think every time I called him “Uncle” around there, he beamed. Sure, he was glad to have me there, but just as much, I suspect, he was glad to have absolute confirmation that, now on EVERY level, McMullen truly was another home and another family for him – not that he ever really needed validation of that. I suspect that others may have begun to call him Uncle Dennis, too, sometimes playfully, but more so because he was so worthy of the distinction, based on the way he immediately took you into his heart, and moved into yours.

I knew from my first day of real estate school, all the way to today, how proud Uncle Dennis was to have me there, and how lucky I felt to have him there for me. I immediately adjusted and embraced my first Uncle-Dennis-ism, to “I’m the Luckiest Girl I Know”.

It was that year that Uncle Dennis had the brainstorm of creating an awards program for the Christmas Party, and, somewhat hesitatingly, Barry agreed and crossed his fingers. Sworn to secrecy, I got to help him make the awards, although Uncle Dennis gets complete credit, or blame as the case may be, for the many zany categories and dubious distinctions, such as the Frantic and Frenzied award, the Jabber Jabber award, and the Bubbly Sparkly award.

Although primarily for fun, Uncle Dennis was sure to incorporate awards for the hard-earned and well-deserved honors of Most Valuable Player, Most Improved, and Rookie of the Year. Then we all got to sit back and enjoy the Dennis Boyle Show in his first stint as Master of Ceremonies. To say he was a huge success would be a gross understatement.

He outdid himself though, for the 2000 awards, what with the new millennium and all. He reached out to involve more people from the office and incorporated more humor, more music . . . just plain MORE! While in general, most people look forward to their office Christmas parties with a mixed sense of obligation and dread, EVERYBODY AT McMULLEN WAS PSYCHED UP FOR THIS ONE! The anticipation in the days and weeks before his second appearance was nearly unbearable! The evening came and went, and Uncle Dennis was an even bigger hit than the year before, and HOT DOG, how he did shine! From then on, our broker, Barry, handed over “Carte Blanche” whenever Uncle Dennis wanted to plan something special.

For many in the office, the events of September 11th weighed heavily on our minds, and there just didn’t seem to be the same level of interest in this year’s party. Uncle Dennis went to work, weeks and weeks ahead of time, searching for song lyrics and sheet music; wrangling singers, would-be brass sections, and props; creating, distributing and tabulating the ballots, and finally, preparing the top-secret awards and choosing presenters. It was a challenge for him this year, and he seemed all the more excited for it!


He made it nearly impossible to NOT get involved, and come the big night, as soon as you walked in the door and saw him in that tux, looking every bit James Bond . . . the excitement, the anticipation, the joy of just being in the same room with him, was overwhelming.

Now, happy go lucky as he already was, having his nephew, Eric, join us at McMullen was the icing on the cake for Uncle Dennis. With his Christmas Party successes over the last two years; with all of the agents he took it upon himself to guide, including me - don’t even think about telling him it’s not his job! It was his mission! - last Sunday was surely Uncle Dennis’ proudest hour. Once again, as the writer, producer, director, and MC of the festivities, this year, Uncle Dennis had the advance satisfaction of knowing that he would not only have the honor of FINALLY receiving not one, but two awards himself, but, what I’m sure made him even prouder, was the fact that he would present the prestigious Rookie of the Year award to his nephew, Eric! Although the night never got that far, “He went out doing what he wanted.”(Marti Corcoran), and it is gratifying to know that he was aware that he was being recognized by his peers. Knowing Uncle Dennis, he felt luckier and was happier still to have played a part in Eric’s success as a new agent. We can take comfort in the fact that, that night, he was able to let us all know just how much he loved us.

With the tremendous highs and lows that come with our jobs, Eric and I had the benefit of learning this business at the hand of a loved and trusted family member, knowing he was watching our backs every second. It allowed us to reach higher, and push ourselves further. Uncle Dennis was always there to catch me when I fell . . . as a realtor, as my Uncle, as my friend.

I know there had to be extra perks, being Dennis’ niece, but I am hard pressed to think of many more things that he did for me, that he wouldn’t do for anyone in our office.

“…he felt his mission here was to make sure that every new agent, whether they be new to the business, or just new to the office, it would be his mission to make sure that they were comfortable here, and I think he did that. I think that’s the one thing that probably will be missed here just the idea that he would greet everyone and make sure they felt comfortable.” (John Guest)

“No matter who you were, you come to this office, he was right there by your side, answering any questions, making you feel welcomed. If only we could open up our hearts every day to do that with strangers, we will continue with Dennis in our hearts.” (Pam Saul)


Do The Footwork

The first thing that Uncle Dennis would insist upon to anyone who came to work at McMullen, is the importance of doing the footwork: the time-consuming stuff, hard stuff like farming an area for prospective clients, preferably on foot(thus footwork), so that you could make personal contact with people in the community you hoped to serve; mailings are essential, too, at least 6 a year; and cold calling, which, by his own admission, was not his strength. His favorite footwork, however, was the Broker’s Tour. It’s basically an open house just for realtors. Many of us use enticements to get agents to actually attend these golden opportunities, like drawings for gift certificates, or giving away two-dollar-bills, but make no mistake, Uncle Dennis was there for the food. That’s not to say he didn’t really pay attention to the houses on tour. More often than not, he’d come back from a successful day of touring with a full belly, clutching a listing sheet, and say, “I think I have someone for this . . .”
(Dympna Fay-Hart) It was his firm in his belief that we support our fellow McMullen agents by making their listings on the tour a priority – food or no food! Touring led to the first house I ever fell in love with, and by truly unusual circumstances, it later became my first listing. He believed that getting out to do the footwork brought endless possibilities and opportunities, and he is right.


I’m On Top of the World!

Uncle Dennis raised the power of positive thinking to an art form with this one. It is clearly the absolute favorite Uncle-Dennis-ism in the office, and the one for which he is best remembered. “He always had the greatest attitude . . . the best disposition . . .” (Diane Cutinelli)
“He changed my life with his positive attitude.” (Pam Saul) is a commonly shared sentiment around McMullen. “He was always so positive and “on top of the world!” I love that saying, and took it on myself and it really works, and it helps!” (Pam Saul) “This guy was our public-relations officer, our cheerleader, our make-you-feel-better kind-of guy. He was always concerned, and I guess that’s the biggest thing, that he had compassion for people.” (Barry Paoli) “We always just couldn’t wait for him to come in, because he had such a happy, sunshine attitude, and he was always singing his favorite 50’s song, and he always greeted us by, “Hi, Sunshine!” He just had a way of making each and every one of us feel very, very special.” (Barb Wojnicki) “I was so grateful for people like Dennis Boyle, who are just so unconditionally nice and giving – he touched a lot of lives. He really was a special person.” (Nicole Norwalk-Galanis) ”Dennis was always doing or saying something to lift your spirits, and he did it right to the very end.” (June Kucia)

In one 5 minute conversation, Uncle Dennis could applaud you on your success, show you that there is still so much more that you could achieve, and gently set you on the path of how to get there.

You could be one of the many he called Sunshine, or Princess, or Hot Stuff, or Big Fella, etc . . . but isn’t it amazing how incredibly special it made you feel?

Put Uncle Dennis’ words into anyone else’s mouth, and they would sound silly and insincere, but when HE spoke them to you, wouldn’t you just feel the sunbeams shooting out of your eyes and hair and fingertips? He was the embodiment of happiness, help, and hope; of faith and friendship. With a word, he could turn your day around, and give you the courage to face another one. He always made sure we knew that the top of the world had enough room for us, too.

This week, so many sentiments have been shared with me, and one of Uncle Dennis’ favorite gals expressed this: “As I looked out my backyard window last night, up into the sky, I envisioned Dennis’ face looking down, I couldn’t help but think to myself, he really is on top of the world now!” (Dympna Fay-Hart)


Do The Next Right Thing

Now this one is MY personal favorite. He gave it to me, inscribed on a clear Lucite block, so that I might always clearly choose the better of the choices that lay before me. I was never certain if he meant “Do the right thing, and while you’re at it, do the next right thing, too.” Or, “If you are stuck in a situation where maybe “the right thing” just can’t happen, rather than giving up, selling out, or lowering your standards, well, maybe you could try doing “the next right thing” and it would still turn out OK.”

I know for the first two years, as proud of my modest success as he was, he was always watchful that success not get the better of me and give me a big head. In October, I think he knew he could let go of that worry, because of a conversation we had. I was trying to decide whether or not to take a trip with Jere and Bailey. Taking a week off at this crucial time could blow my chance at meeting my sales goals; however, if I didn’t go, there would be no guarantee that I would actually generate the sales I needed. We were talking about my year, and the negative impact that September 11th, unrealistic sellers, and timid buyers had on the numbers I had set as my goal last January. He asked me outright if I was going to meet my goal this year.

I simply said, that, “It depends which goal is more important. Do I do this work for the money, or do I do this work to make a difference in my family’s quality of life?” He looked at me, and pondered the question. I continued, “Will I feel better in January, knowing I hit my numbers this year, or will I feel better knowing that my work helped make it possible for Jere, Bailey and me to have lots of vacation time together?” He smiled big, nodded his head, and gave his approving “Harrumph.” Of course, we took the trip.

Uncle Dennis helped Jere and me find our first home and our second home. He gave me the love, support, and encouragement I needed to start and succeed as a new member of the Boyle Family, and later, in a career that I care about and am good at; a career that found us our current home, which he LOVED. Through him, my life has become enriched by family that have become co-workers, and co-workers that have become family, friends that have become clients, and clients that have become friends. He cautioned me to find a balance, because, especially for working mothers who have to juggle so much to begin with in REGULAR jobs, this job could quickly take over your life and make you lose sight of what is most important – your family and friends. Most of the time, I still struggle to find that balance, but I will find it, I promise.

Uncle Dennis loved being a part of Century 21 McMullen, and everyone under it’s roof. With every inch of him, he believed that there could be no better place to do our work, and no better team of people with which to do it. He was proud of us, his team, and was thrilled to have Eric and me there beside him. He gave Barry high praise for putting such a fine team together. He was particularly proud of the soft-spoken strength with which John Guest helps keep us all on the right path. He saw the good in everyone he came across.

“You can really tell something about a person and how much they contributed in life, and in love, by the void that is left when they’re gone.” (Chuck Urmann) Dennis Boyle filled the holes in the lives of so many people, even those who didn’t even know they had holes, but they will surely know now!

Anyone who knew him will surely never forget him, and I have to feel bad for all of the agents-to-come who will never know what it was like to have Uncle Dennis around. The best tribute we could pay him would be for each of us to engrave on our hearts a pledge to give back or share with others just a little of the kindness and patience he so willingly gave us.

Like so many, I love my Uncle Dennis. I am proud of him, and I hope he knows it because I told him, but even more, I hope I showed him. After all, as another Uncle-Dennis-ism goes, “Well done is better than well said.” I know he was proud of me and Jere, too, and that be adored “his girl,” Bailey Rose, because he showed us every time we saw him or spoke with him. I know he loved me like a daughter, not as the wife of his nephew. Uncle Dennis was the best friend, confident, guidance counselor and personal cheerleader that I have ever, or will ever know. I am the luckiest girl I know to have been part of both of his worlds, but the world he is a part of now, is the luckiest of all.
December 18, 2001