William Jex Boyack
Contributor: sheilanneharrison Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
The following are what Dad/Jex Boyack wrote in his own handprinting. I (Mack Boyack) have typed this in from the original. I have the original in my possesion at this time - 29 Aug 2006. He wrote this in 1934 and according to Mom he wrote it at a time when he was down sick and sitting around home. This is the only written record we have from his own hand - - JMB son number 2.
Jex Boyack - Notable Events: Born Nov. 19, 1908, Sp Fork - Utah.
Started School 5 years of age. Third Boy of a Family of Seven. I was only six years of age when parents were divorced. Cause = drinking. I would not recognize him if I were to see him now - 1934. Sixth - Grade - out with bad case of measles. Bad abscess on Jaw as after effects - Lanced by Doctor - - Filled up again, broke open in night on the outside, fortunately for me or I would not be here probably to write this. Told joke in school that no one but myself laughed at. Never again! Took woodwork in S. H. S. [Spanish Fork High School] Freshman year - Quite handy at it and I liked it. Sophomore and Junior years went in strong for athletics. Played on 2nd team for H. S. in basketball. Took the school in 440 yard dash and dis[#$@^!]ss. Spoiled my wind and heart by overtraining, running mile and half mile. Senior year I broke into Dramatics. Took Lead in Senior play "Cappy Ricks" and played again in school play "Miss Somebody Else". Case of puppy love for about one year. Also in Senior year, I was High School Athletic Manager. Graduated H. S. in Spring 1926 at 17 years of age.
Took over Grandad Brockbank's farm for a year And ran it pretty well. Netted him more money than he had recieved from it for several years. Had a disagreement, evenso, with Grandad and quit in the one year. (A bear to work for) Bought me a used Model T Ford sedan from proceeds on farm - 390.00 bought during summer -- worked for Ray Hales on farm one summer. Contracted his beets - 200 tons - Made $70.00 in 11 days. Contracted next year - 64.00. Made $30.00 down payment on RCA radio for home.
Went to work in Bingham mines fall of "28” until spring "29". Traded old car in on new Ford - cost $680.00. I also had installment buying fever bad. Tipped it over Decoration Day,, 6000 miles - $125.00 Repairs. Harold tipped it over again 3 months later. $100.00 est. Repairs. Sold car after fully paid for Dec. 1, 29 for $350.00 agh. End of car business.
Went to B.Y.U. winter quarter, '27 - '28. Borrowed $700.00 to go from uncle H. D. Brockbank. Also spring quarter. Jobbed around during summer - work at canning plant. No more mines for me. They are deep enough as far as I am concerned.
Back to school, B.Y.U. winter quarter '29 - '30. I forgot something. Went to work for Smith Auto selling Fords. Made 130.00 1 month. Got nutty, thought I could make more money selling uniforms & dresses. Traveled 3000 miles in 3 weeks - (didn't make expenses). Quit that - sold Xmas cards - Did well. Then to the mines . Fall, 1928. Spring 1930. worked into Safeway stores, part time, then steady job in store No. 28 west center st. Provo . 7 clerks then - 2 now. worked there regular 1 week, then I. E. Brockbank told me I was wasting my time and recommended me to a job of keeping books at a salary of $100.00 per month at Automobile sales agency for Geo. Brockbank. Turned out to be a bad move. Took out 2500.00 Life Ins. policy - eventually lost it. Found the Girl of my Dreams, became love sick, bought a great big diamond and, - ah - er - well, we went to the Salt Lake Temple and were married - 11:30 p/m June 26 1930. Honeymooned in Temple Square Hotel, Old Mill, Salt Lake City.
Lost my job Dec. 1 Still happy about that incident, altho we had to go to live with my wife's folks for a few months. Got along fine. Got a job driving truck - Madsen Cleaning - Quit a week later - (another bum move) and went to work again for Smith Auto Co & Fords - was pictured as permanent thing to me. Was Laid off 6 weeks later. Have never felt I got a fair deal here. Smith, (my impression) a poor guy to work for but a very good Bishop.
During these six weeks we were presented with a fine boy - 6 pounds. Three weeks after this great event my wife was operated on for appendicitis. $300.00 hospital and Doctor bills heaped on us in 3 weeks. Hardly out from under this yet, but will be eventually - if given a chance. But I was laid off in spite of all this.
I immediately went to work for Olsen Motor Sales selling Chevrolets, much to Smith's Chagrin. Quit there and went to work in meat market in Sewell's new store, Provo. Turned out to be too honest to sell rotten and spoiled meat for high prices. Wasted 2 weeks. End of meat [#$@^!]tting career.
Then moved to Spanish Fork into next thing to a barn - lived in this 2 months, then to 3rd ward in old Evans home. Got along pretty well, by working in the canning plant & sugar company & rejoined National Guard to help pay rent. Seargent in Guard for 5 years, Also hold rating of 1st and 2nd class gunner. Chairman Aaronic Priesthook Committee for 2 years. Also 1932-33 Teacher and Supervisor Priests Quorum for 2 years and together with this 2nd counsellor and Activity Directory in Young Mens Mutual 1933-34. Appointed as president - Young Men’s Mutual, 3rd Ward by Bishop Smith and in spring of 1934 And at this writing I am Janitor of 3rd Ward Church. My - My - see what I'm comin' too. Also took part in M.I.A. 3 act play Last 2 years. Both were a success. This is all until I have lived some more of my life.
The following is written by me - Mack Boyack- I wrote this to put in his History Book that I compiled. Gary, Kent, and Jeanine also wrote their recollections of Dad and they were put in that book as well.
HISTORY OF WILLIAM JEX BOYACK by J. MACK BOYACK
Recently I came to the realization that my own children do not know very much about my father (their grandfather). Looking back from the distance of age, and some maturity, (as of this date I am sixty two), and now that I am a father and grandfather, I have come to know what a good man our father was. I can see the many good qualities he exhibited throughout his life. His father left their home while he was young and he did not have a good example to follow, but his mother was a good strong person and gave him good direction throughout his life. The fact that they had to fight for survival and work hard, taught him many important principles. He was one of the hardest working individuals I have ever known, and without a doubt, he was a totally honest and a very trustworthy person.
We three older boys had many opportunities to work with Dad. We worked with him on the Joseph Smith Farm, we helped in the stores he managed, and when he could get us to help, we worked in the gardens and around home. Kent and I worked one summer with Dad up in the canyons while he was working for the Forest Service, taking care of the campgrounds in Payson, Hobblecreek, Diamond Fork, and Rock Canyon. It was more fun than work for Kent and I.
The pictures that he loved so much have become a stimulus to our memories. They have stimulated and motivated me to get busy and put together this book with pictures and some of the events that transpired in his life. We can all benefit from knowing what he tried to do with his life, and what he accomplished, while here on this earth. I, of course, was around while many of these events took place. Now looking at them from the perspective of experience and maturity and knowledge, I have a much greater respect for all he did and went through. I hope to live my life better and complain a little less after reading and studying Dad’s life. I hope it will help each of his children and grandchildren to all be better knowing some of his life history.
Dad loved to hunt and [#$@^!]h, he enjoyed socializing, and he fit into any group of people. He used to wave at all when we were up in the canyon passing folks or walking by someone he would say a friendly hello. He liked to garden and took much pride in what he produced. He enjoyed raising beautiful flowers and also photographing them. The yellow rose was a favorite. Taking and showing pictures was a hobby he never tired of and would often justify it by saying that was where his cigarette money went, but he never did smoke.
He was very conservative and enjoyed visiting with Uncle Hal Madsen and talking about business and politics, as both managed businesses and had a lot in common. A big part of our lives was visiting our extended family. Sundays we would travel to see our cousins, or they would come to see us. He enjoyed travelling and going on trips. He loved to camp, go into the mountains and enjoy nature. He could see the beauty in the sunset, in the autumn leaves, snow scenes, and much much more; then he would capture it in a picture.
He didn’t believe in debt and his word was his bond. He saved until he could afford to buy. He paid cash for the cars he bought and only went in debt for our home. He and mom were a good team and she supported Dad extremely well. I know he loved Mom totally. He was proud of his family and always tried to stay close to his and Mom’s families. He was congenial in greeting people whether in church, business or community and was not phony or a put on. If he had a problem, whether it was a challenge in his life, or some problem with an individual, he met them head on and never tried to put them on someone else.
As I have thought back on his battle with Multiple Myeloma, I have realized the courage he had and how hard he tried to not burden any of us children with how he felt. He was always positive with us, and Mom said, when she would get discouraged he would speak positive to her and bouy her up. He went through my marriage and Gary’s with all the stress of his sickness and never complained, and now when I look at those marriage pictures I see how weak he was and know it was very hard on him. He carried on with all of life’s activities, took care of his church responsibilities and his work at the store. Some of the store work he did from home when he was not feeling good.
He was a good judge of character and when I mentioned that to Mom, she said that some of that was learned through experience. He had a strong testimony of the Gospel, he showed that by the way he lived life and how he participated in church activity. I always remembered him saying in church that he “believed” the church was true, but after he became ill he read the scriptures and pondered a lot and as I recall, he asked Kent to give his (Dad’s ) testimony in church once when he was to ill to go and to say he “knew” the Gospel was true.
He loved and respected his Mom, who he affectionately called Ma”. He took it upon himself to see to it that her garden and lawn and home were taken care of. She came to our house much of the time for Sunday dinners. We grew up feeling we had a responsibility to take care of “Grandma” and to Honor her as our Father had.
I didn’t take the opportunity when he was here to tell him that I loved him and appreciated all he did for me. I hope in living my life to the best I can, it will show him that all he did meant a lot to me. I will do all in my power to tell about his life to my posterity and encourage them to follow his example.
Written Dec 7 1997
By son number two
J. Mack Boyack
REFLECTIONS ON MY FATHER, WILLIAM JEX BOYACK by Gary Boyack
I’ve been putting off these notes for some time, even though my brother Mack has been putting together a scrapbook history of my Dad for the last several months. I’ve [#$@^!]led it “Reflections” because I don’t think I’m capable of doing a history, and the work that Mack has been doing will serve the purpose much better. I believe “Reflections” is the best term because it carries the implication for me of those things that have stood out in my mind and are somewhat representative of my father. I say somewhat, because I only hope to capture the essence of those things in my memory that time has not blurred.
Many things come to mind as I try to give some definition to the character of my father. Tried and true labels such as honesty, dependability, cheerfulness, work ethic, devotion and [#$@^!]very come to mind. Those who knew my father would say these were not the only worthy characteristics of Jex, and on that I agree. But again, this is not intended to be all encompassing, but rather an attempt to give the essence of my memories.
I can’t give a specific instance of my father’s honesty. What I can say is that we were taught it and it was expected of us. There was never anything in my father’s life that would have ever led me to believe that he was ever part of a dishonest act.
Dad was dependable in all of his activities-- at home, at work and in the community. It may seem like a little thing, but the thing that stands out in my mind was his commitment to put the awnings up and take them down at the appropriate times at the store so that the windows had maximum exposure to the sidewalk passers-by but would never allow the sun to bleach the clothing on display in the windows.
Everyone who knew Jex knew what a hard worker he was. He took pride in the stores that he managed and was willing to put in the work to make them successful. He carefully tended and [#$@^!]ltivated his vegetable and flower gardens. I worked the closest with my father in a work situation at the Joseph Smith farm in Palmyra, New York. He was called there as a working caretaker and paid rent on the farm and was expected to live off the products of the farm that could be sold on the market. Milk was the main source of cash, but so also were beans and other items that were not used to feed the cows. World War II was just drawing to a close during the time that we worked the farm, so there was no hired help available, and while the farmers pooled their labor on certain things like harvesting the corn for silage, it was much of the time a one-man operation with limited help from me (14 years old) and Mack (10 years old). As I look back on the time there, I could see that farming was not my father’s first love, but nevertheless he persevered with his efforts and made the farm a successful operation. Now, of course, the farm is not an operating farm in terms of producing income, but the efforts of my father, and others, allowed the Church to maintain those historical farms until the present day missionary system could take over.
My dad was cheerful. It would be easy to think that it was just a facade that he developed as a manager of a store. But the same cheerfulness existed at home. The testimony of his cheerfulness is that we older children never really knew much of his last fatal illness, because he never complained. We knew that he was weak and that his health was deteriorating, but our main source of information was from Mother. If you would ask Dad how he was doing, his reply would invariably be something like “Pretty good.” The only thing that was close to a complaint was of a political nature. He was the most Republican person that I ever knew, and he had complaints about Franklin Delano Roosevelt and about the OPA (Office of Price Administration). While he knew that rationing was necessary, as part of the war effort, he felt that the bureaucracy created by the OPA was often worse than the conditions that they tried to [#$@^!]re or prevent.
Dad was a very mild-mannered man, usually, but one incident stands out in my mind to illustrate that he could be very [#$@^!]ve and forceful when necessary. We had a large bull on the farm and we were always very careful around it because he had been known to charge people and try to hurt them. It was decided to get rid of the old bull, and we purchased a small one that we named “Jimmy.” I helped dehorn him and always looked at him as a harmless playmate. But one law of nature we should remember is that young, small animals will eventually become older, much larger animals. This was the case with Jimmy, but we still were not very cautious around him. This was a mistake. One day my cousin Glen allowed himself to get in the same stall in the horse barn with Jimmy. When we heard Glen calling for help we all ran to the barn to see Jimmy trying to smash Glen against the heavy boards of the stall. We first tried pulling on the bull’s tail to get him away. This had little effect. Dad couldn’t use the time-worn expression to “take the bull by the horns” because Jimmy didn’t have any. He did the next best thing. He started working on the other end of Jimmy with a pitchfork. At first Jimmy didn’t pay any attention to that until Dad started jabbing at some “tender areas.��� That got Jimmy’s attention in a hurry. He turned on Dad, which allowed Glen to get out of the way, and Dad stood his ground and shooed Jimmy out of the barn and into the corral. I think we sold Jimmy shortly after this.
Mack’s history will show that Dad was very active in the Church and the community. My “Reflections” will fo[#$@^!]s on hobby types of activities. We all know of his great love for photography. By today’s standards his equipment was very simple, but I think the photos that we all continue to go through are a testament to his skill and dedication as a photographer. As a teenager, I frequently compared my Dad’s skills (in areas other than photography) with my uncle, Wilbert Jorgensen. This was a very unfair comparison. Wilbert was the best at anything that he undertook. He was the pitcher for the local baseball team and I loved to see him strike out the batters. When we went [#$@^!]hing, Wilbert caught the most [#$@^!]h, and he always got the biggest deer. In later years I can see that Dad thought the activity was more important than the compe[#$@^!]ion. Some of my fondest memories are of those hunting and [#$@^!]hing trips that I was able to go on, and I now realize what a gift was given to me -- even though Dad could have decided that there was no point in trying to measure up to Wilbert and so declined to be part of those events.
I always remember money as being very important in our home. Important, because any decisions that were to be made about money had to be carefully thought out so it was used in a meaningful, efficient way. While money was at a premium in the family, Dad considered new cars a good investment and a chance to get a vacation. They combined trips to the east to pick up [#$@^!]nd new cars and go to the New York World’s fair. In this way we had 36 Ford, a 39 Pontiac and a 55 Pontiac. I can remember scarce money being used to take us on the Maid of the Mist at Niagra Falls, and to see the Rockettes and a radio show at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
Two other things stand out about money. Dad was very proud in his last year as store manager to have his store recognized as having the best profit margin. Other larger stores made more as part of the Christensen’s corporation, but Dad’s was the most efficiently run. As I was getting ready to leave for my mission, it was brought out that $80.00 a month for me would be quite a drain on the family finances. But I’ll never forget Dad, in my missionary farewell, quoting from I Nephi 3:7 -- “I know that the Lord giveth no commandment to the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they accomplish the thing which he had commandeth them.”
Love of family was very important to my father. It was usually not expressed verbally and in hugs. But early on, I witnessed Dad’s concern for Grandma Boyack. The other children helped also. But it was Dad that spearheaded the efforts to make her comfortable. Part of Grandma’s Will stated that Jex should be paid first for the money that he had spent to buy her a new furnace. Another memory is of us loading beans on the wagon and Mack, helping to place the forkfuls of beans, falling off and breaking his arm. Dad picked Mack up tenderly to carry him to the car to go to the doctor, saying, “Oh my boy, my boy.” I felt he was trying to share the hurt of Mack and lessen it anyway that he could.
When Dad died, the loss was overpowering. My biggest concern, however, was in the guilt that I expressed to Aunt Sade in tears when I said “I never told him that I loved him.” She comforted me by saying, “Gary your whole life told him that you loved him.” I knew this wasn’t completely true, but it comforted me nonetheless.
Anyway I now conclude this by saying “Dad, I love you. Thank you for everything.”
My Thoughts and Reflections on My Father
William Jex Boyack
By Third Son J. Kent Boyack
As I think back over the memories of Dad, the things that really stand out in my mind are his honesty, his integrity his all encompassing love for his family (though rarely said), His love for the Church, his love of photography and his love of nature. He was also one of the greatest teachers that was ever in my life.
As far back as I can remember, we were always going on a family ex[#$@^!]rsion. Even if it only meant to visit extended family or a trip up the canyons. Often, I remember just going up to the canyon for a picnic to roast a hot dog on the fire or sometimes to [#$@^!]h. Other times we were able to take longer trips like our family trip to Yellowstone before Gary went off to war, and our trip to Bryce and Zion’s Canyons.
Dad tried very hard to teach me to love to [#$@^!]h as much as he did but try as I might, I just couldn’t love it like he did even though he taught me all about it.
Then, of course, there was the hunting that dad loved so much. The deer and the pheasant hunts. I think I was eight years old when dad first took me deer hunting. I was really excited when I turned 12 because then I could carry dad’s 30-30 rifle but only after he had taught me all the rules of gun safety. I remember how he set me up and let me shoot my first (and only) deer. Dad lovingly said it was “barely a buck” because the antlers were only about 2 inches long and still covered in velvet. He did say throughout the winter that it was the best deer meat we ever had. We always had to save the shell casings so that if and when we got our rooster pheasants we could pull the tail feathers out of the bird and stuff them into the shell casings and it made a very pretty object to throw in the air like a feathered projectile.
Then there were the times in the fall of the pheasant hunt. We would always go down to the west fields on opening day. The very best times during the pheasant hunt for me was when dad and I would leave from the store in the afternoon and then he and I would drive around on the small lanes in the fields looking for pheasants and when we would spot one, either he would get out of his side of the car or I would out of mine to shoot at the pheasant. When it was too dark to see, we would then go back to work. Those were great times for good talks and learning experiences for me.
Dad would start walking to the store and back every day several weeks before the deer hunt (weather permitting) to get his legs and body in better shape so that he could do all of the hiking up the mountains during the hunt. Even though I was younger and ran track in high school, dad could still out hike me hands down.
Another of my fond memories was that every fall, he and I would go to the Merchandise Mart in Salt Lake to see and to order many of the items that we would sell in the store prior to and during the Christmas season. He would often let me pick out an item that I liked and would then become my Christmas present sometimes accompanied with a $5.00 bill for helping all year at the store. During the fall, winter and spring seasons I would work at the store every day after school and all day on Saturday and we got to close in those days on Sunday. But during the summer months, dad would encourage me to go and work for the farmers and that would either be G. Ray Hales or Edward Boyer so I could learn different responsibilities and good hard work as well.
During the last eight years of his life, he taught me how to be a merchant. He taught me how to buy and sell merchandise and make a profit as he had done so successfully over the years. He did it so well in fact that it became my profession for forty years.
He taught me how to drive and by the time I was fourteen years old, I was driving dad to his Doctor appoi[#$@^!]ents and to work appoi[#$@^!]ents when mother wasn’t able to. We had taken over Gary’s 1949 Oldsmobile which had a column stick shift and it became very painful in the shoulders for dad to shift the gears hence my chance to drive which, of course, I thought was great.
I remember how happy and proud dad was when he was able to see the new home on 8th south completed and were able to move in and how he was able to get a bunch of rose bushes planted and was able to see their beauty. That home had been a dream for dad for a while. I also remember him telling mother that as soon as Penalty clause for early payoff was met, that she should pull the money out of savings and pay off the home because he just did not believe in debt and didn’t want mother to have that debt either.
A very special memory for me was when dad, with tears in his eyes, told me he just couldn't come to my graduation he was just too sick and was pretty much confined to bed. He also said that he wanted me to bear his Testimony that following Sunday which was Fast and Testimony Meeting because he wanted me to thank all the ward members for their love and prayers and to let them all know how much he loved the Gospel and that he knew of it’s truth and that we belonged to the only true Church. He did have a very strong testimony of the Gospel. This was just three days before he died. He died in my arms which was special to me.
His are shoes and footsteps that I can only hope to try to come close to filling. I love you dad for being the influence that you have been in my life.
August 2, 1998
Dear Loved Ones,
As I approach my 52nd birthday, I reflect upon what my like would have been like if my “Daddy” had lived past his 50th birthday.
I probably would have remained in Utah and perhaps attended college and married someone else in the temple as all Mormon girls seem to do.
Since I was only eleven when Daddy died, my memory of him is not as detailed as Gary, Mack, or Kent’s and I’m sure Kim’s’ is even dimmer than mine. I do remember that Daddy loved to play the harmonica and put Kim and I on his knew to entertain us. He loved popcorn and apples and I can still see him peeling an apple with a paring knife and managing to keep the peel in one long continuous [#$@^!]rly piece.
I remember him working long hours at Christensen’s and the trouble he went to when I wanted a pair of shoes or white majorette boots. He had to “special order” them for my long narrow feet. I wanted those so badly and was told I would have to wear them as my dress shoes to church because they were so expensive. I also remember the sores they rubbed on my calves!!
Daddy loved taking pictures and would go to great lengths to ensure that the lighting and exposure were perfect. Daddy made a special table and [#$@^!]pboard for his little girl to play house with and I wish I had them today. I loved to play with dolls and every Christmas I would receive the doll I had requested from Santa Claus.
Today I still have three of those dolls and one of them (my favorite) is a Madame Alexander doll that Daddy gave to me the Christmas of 1956 (the last Christmas he was alive). I know that he loved his family very much, although I don’t remember him saying those exact words of “I love you” to me. He chose instead to use his actions and example to good, honest living and his love of the Gospel to show his love.
He built us a beautiful home and planted the grounds with tress and beautiful flowers. I can still see him faithfully watering everything after he’d had a long hard day at work. He loved to [#$@^!]h and hunt and even though I got car sick going up those canyon roads, I know how peaceful and beautiful it was when we got there. I remember the garden we had on Main Street and having Daddy help me pick tomatoes so that I could sell them at a stand out front or carry them in a wagon around the neighborhood.
I can recall the deer that Daddy shot and seeing it hang from the garage rafters as he prepared to [#$@^!]t it up. It was important for him to take care of his family and provide for them. I know that Mom and Daddy loved music and would encourage us to play the piano and sing. I was too lazy to stick with the lessons and to this day, I can’t play the piano, but wish I could.
I can remember all the family get-togethers with cousins and Aunts and Uncles and the picnics we had over holidays. We went to Grandma Boyacks’ and got into mischief like all kids do.
Most of all, I have one lasting memory of Daddy coming to see me dance the “May Pole” at Jefferson school. I was in 6th grade and wanted him to come to school so badly. He was very sick and must have felt terrible, but because I had pleaded with him, he got out of his sick bed one last time to show his daughter how much he loved her and wanted to support her.
Thank you Daddy - I love you and only wish I could have watched you grow old!!
Mack Boyack has a History Book for Jex Boyack and it has all of the the original records in it.