Nella Faye Kirkland Boyett, 91, of Fernandina Beach, passed away peacefully Saturday, May 5, 2018, in the loving care of the Warner Center for Caring in Fernandina Beach.
A native of Waycross, Georgia, she was the daughter of Repperd and Mamie Kirkland. Following the loss of her father at age ten, Nella helped her mother raise herself, as well as her two sisters and two younger brothers. Though life was difficult, the family of five endured, and in so doing, such experience bonded them together as lifelong friends.
Following her graduation from High School, and upon his return from World War II, Nella married her wartime sweetheart, Milford, at The First Church of the Nazarene in Waycross. After three children and having lived several years in Jacksonville, Milford and Nella in the early 1950’s relocated to Fernandina, a sleepy little fishing village and mill town, which they so came to love. There they begin to build a life.
Mom and Dad were followed to Fernandina by Milford’s brothers and sisters-in-law; Winston and Iris; and Willis (Pap) and Betty. For many years the three families lived next door to one another. The men all began careers with the Container Corporation of America, while the Moms performed the myriad of familial duties necessary to nurture and care for the thirteen cousins to follow. All of whom grew up with enduring memories of the love and many kindnesses shown them by their Aunts and Uncles who comprised their one large extended family.
Though her responsibilities were many, and her time and resources limited, Nella was always ready to help others in need. More than once, she took the children of others into her home and cared for them for extended periods, bittersweetly, returning them when the time of crisis for the family in need had passed.
Nella shared Milford’s love of travel and exploration. Together they treated their children to numerous escapades of discovery over most of the lower 48 states, as well as many of the provinces of Canada, and in so doing, instilled within their children a passion for travel and adventure. Mother and father continued their passion for travel well into their eighties, continuing in their motor home, their adventures across America.
Nella was predeceased by her eldest daughter, Shirley Lynn Boyett; sisters, Lataine Smith and Norma Jean Minchew; brother, Howard Kirkland; and husband of 72 years, Milford.
Mother leaves behind her eldest daughter’s son, Seth Adam Boyett (Michelle) of Atlanta; daughter Dee B. Stoudemire (Richard) of Jacksonville; son, Repperd Milford Boyett (Kathy) of Yulee; son, Herbert F. Boyett of Jacksonville; her daughter-in-law of 35 years, Mary Gwen Boyett of Hilton Head Island, S.C.; granddaughter, Jane M. Stoudemire of Charleston, S.C.; and great-grandsons Kyle and Sean Boyett of Atlanta, Georgia. Nella also leaves behind her remaining sibling; Dalton Kirkland of West Virginia; and her lifelong friend and sister-in-law, Betty Boyett of Fernandina.
The family wishes to thank those extended family members and friends who lovingly made themselves available to help “Aunt Nella” and “Uncle Milford” over the past several years. We especially appreciate all your love and support over the past year, as Mom departed just two days shy of Dad’s passing last year.
The family will receive friends from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m., within the Burgess Chapel of Oxley-Heard, with services following immediately at 11:30 a.m., Saturday, May 12, with the Rev. Rick Lee officiating. Nella will be laid to rest next to Shirley and Milford at Bosque Bello Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be made to the Warner Center for Caring at Community Hospice & Palliative Care Foundation, 4266 Sunbeam Road, Jacksonville, Fl. 32257, or online at support.communityhospice.com.