Cover photo for James "Jim"  Boykin's Obituary
James "Jim"  Boykin Profile Photo
1935 JIM 2024

James "Jim" Boykin

January 22, 1935 — March 31, 2024

James “Jim” Edward Boykin passed away peacefully with his wife by his side on Easter Sunday, March 31, 2024 at the age of 89.

Born and raised in Abilene, Texas, Jim attended Abilene High School and later the University of Texas at Austin. He was a member of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity and graduated with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree. It was at UT that he met the love of his life, Jeannette Waters from Weslaco, Texas. They were married after Jim’s graduation on August 5, 1957.

Jim joined the United States Navy shortly thereafter and was given the opportunity to rank his preferred deployment locations. After extensive research (typical of Jim), he determined San Diego had the most favorable reviews and listed it as his first choice. As fate would have it, he was stationed at the Coronado Naval base in San Diego, where he served honorably for three years. Jim and Jeannette fell in love with the area and La Jolla would become a vacation destination and later permanent home.

Upon completion of his Naval service, Jim moved the family back to his hometown of Abilene, where he joined his father and brother in the family real estate development business. Jim spent his career serving as co-chairman of Boykin Properties, a company that developed and managed office, retail, industrial and residential properties, and still exists today. Mike Wheeler was Jim’s right hand man at the company for 40 years, and in 1992 they formed the Boykin/Wheeler Management Company to manage Boykin Properties buildings as well as other properties in the area. While in Abilene, Jim served as president of the Jaycees civic organization, was a longtime board member of First State Bank and an active member of Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest. He also later served as a deacon at La Jolla Presbyterian Church.

Jim was a soft-spoken, mild-mannered Southern gentleman. He was a loyal and devoted husband, father and grandfather, and was a supportive and stable force in the lives of all his family members. One of his favorite sayings was “stay steady in the boat”. He was an eternal optimist and remained so, down to the very end of his life. He had many hobbies and was laser-focused on whichever one he was pursuing at the time, whether it be earning his pilot’s license, taking up tennis, learning to paint, playing guitar, or restoring antique cars. Jim was always on the hunt for a good real estate deal and always had his family in mind when considering whether to make a purchase. His Texas Hill Country ranch and La Jolla home were two such investments that provided countless joyful times and special memories for his wife, children and grandchildren. Jim loved to “work the land” at his ranch and insisted on mowing the meadow and chopping down cedars himself. He was also an avid tennis player and played well into his 80’s with his buddies at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club.

Jim is preceded in death by his father Marshall Edward Boykin, Sr., mother Jimmie Norton Boykin, brother Marshall Edward Boykin Jr. and sister-in-law Leslie Wood Boykin.

He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Jeannette Waters Boykin, daughter Belinda Boykin Oelman, son Jeffrey Newell Boykin, grandsons Palmer Hutcheson Oelman, James Marshall Oelman, Robert Coolidge Oelman and Henry Newell Boykin, and numerous nieces and nephews.

A memorial service was held in La Jolla, California on Wednesday, April 17th at the La Jolla Presbyterian Church chapel.

A burial service will be held in Abilene on Friday, May 3rd at three o’clock in the afternoon at the Elmwood Cemetery, 5750 Hwy 277 South. Immediately following, family and friends are invited to a reception at the Abilene Country Club, 4039 South Treadaway Boulevard.

The family would like to extend a special thank you to Carol Lindsey of Superior Home Care Services and her incredible staff of caregivers, and to the Silverado Hospice medical team.

In lieu of customary remembrances, the family requests with gratitude that memorial contributions be directed to Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest at 602 Meander Street, 79602, or the American Cancer Society @cancer.org/donate.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James "Jim" Boykin, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Graveside Service

Friday, May 3, 2024

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Central time)

Elmwood Memorial Park

5750 US-277, Abilene, TX 79606

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Reception

Friday, May 3, 2024

4:00 - 6:00 pm (Central time)

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