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James Mitchell (Mitch) Boyd

1938 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
James Mitchell (Mitch) Boyd Obituary
James Mitchell (Mitch) Boyd

Naples, FL

James Mitchell (Mitch) Boyd (79) died peacefully at home in Naples, FL on August 6, 2018. Predeceased by his parents, Mitchell (Skipper) and Melinda Boyd, his stepmother, Gladys Mann Boyd and his son, Par Gunter Boyd, Mitch is survived by his beloved wife of 46 years, Betty, and their combined family of four daughters, Michele Boyd, Margo Boyd and Lynne Hill (Sam) of Nashville, TN and Elaine Boyd of Murfreesboro, TN, 11 grandchildren, 4 great-grandchildren and 1 great-great grandson.

Born in Nashville, TN on August 24, 1938, Mitchell graduated from David Lipscomb High School and Vanderbilt University, where he majored in psychology and fine arts. In the middle of his four- year matriculation at Vanderbilt, he spent three years in the US Army as a psychiatric corpsman serving at Walter Reed Army Hospital (Washington, DC) and Tripler Army Hospital (Honolulu, Hawaii). After completion of his enlistment, he returned to Vanderbilt from which he graduated cum laude in 1963.

After college he worked as a translator in Paris at the British Hospital for one year, followed by two years at the New York Department of Welfare. In 1966, he joined Shoney's as a trainee, leaving in 1968 to buy and manage a boat dock with his father. By 1971, Shoney's corporate headquarters moved to Nashville and Mitchell decided to rejoin the company as Franchise Director. There, he met and married Betty. The couple moved to Staunton, VA where they, along with Mitch's best friend, Jerry Brunotts, launched SHOCAP, a franchising concept which included several restaurant brands and hotels.

SHOCAP became very successful and in 1986 was sold to Shoney's Inc. After the sale, Mitchell became Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Shoney's and served in this capacity for three years until he realized that "the satisfaction of a job well done has no better reward than a lower golf handicap and an opportunity to travel widely and see the world." Betty enthusiastically agreed. For the last 23 years, Mitch and Betty have lived in Naples, FL and traveled widely. As Members of Naples' Quail Creek Country Club, they widened their circle of friends and he continued to work on that golf handicap.

Mitchell made a difference in many lives. He will be greatly missed. A Celebration of his Life will be held at a future date at Quail Creek Country Club. Donations in Mitchell's memory may be made to Avow Hospice of Naples, FL through their website, or by mail to Avow Hospice, 1095 Whippoorwill Lane, Naples, FL 34105 in recognition of the support provided at the end of Mitchell's life or to the .
Published in Naples Daily News on Aug. 12, 2018
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