Dr. Jack Boyde, beloved professor of history, mentor, and friend to so many, lived in the memories of Late 60s/Early 70s Reunion attendees gathered at Franciscan University in August 2006. His fascinating classes, his dedication to the University, and his personal generosity will never be forgotten. This year, he was the posthumous recipient of the Faithful Franciscan Award, a fitting acknowledgement of his love for this school and its ideals. Afterwards, his former students and his family shared their thoughts about this remarkable man.
A graduate of the class of 1966, Jack was hired by the College almost immediately as an instructor and served as department chair from 1982-1992. He received his MS from the University of Pittsburgh and his doctorate from Kent State.
“He was one of our all-time great profs,” said Bill Farrell ’72. “His lectures captivated the class. He never needed notes or texts and could relate all the material to our life experience. He was a great guy.”
Dave Craven ’72 recalls with amazement how Jack’s knowledge of history made him able to predict the future. “Over 30 years ago, he said that when Tito died, the Balkan region would have civil war.”
Yet another classmate remembered Boyde’s exacting standards: “He expected more from us than most other profs. And he got it,” noted Carmine Amelio ’72.
Jack was tireless in expanding the University’s role in the social sciences, founding its Archaeological Field School and its anthropology major. He involved thousands of school children in the wonders of history with his work on Fort Steuben and other local digs.
His wife, Enice (Raggi ’73), says Jack brought enthusiasm and love to every role he had—teacher, husband, father, and friend: “He was a wonderful husband and father…and was always one to give a helping hand to neighbors and those in need…There wasn’t a single day he didn’t want to be here teaching. He thought it was fun.”
Originally published in the Autumn 2006 Baronette newsletter.