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Retired Deputy Superintendent Roy Boyd was a giant of a man

Life Tributes

Sunday, March 17, 2013    

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THE tributes were many, but they all had a common thread.

Retired deputy Superintendent Roy Lynsdell Boyd was a giant of a man.

The huge outpouring of respect for the career cop was evident based on the large turnout that converged on the Covenant Moravian Church on Thursday for a thanksgiving service and to say their final farewell to a man who made an indelible mark on those he interacted with during his short time on earth.

Boyd was cut down by gunmen's bullets as he returned from church on February 24.

But even though his untimely death was a hard pill to swallow, there were many moments of laughter during the service as almost every tribute offered referred to Boyd's jovial spirit.

"I admired my father because he taught me that you didn't have to have a lot of money to be happy. My father was a fun-loving man and if you knew the man you would know that his two greatest loves were cooking and dancing. He was really the life of the party," Boyd's son Rohan said as he read the eulogy.

Boyd had retired from the constabulary in May 2009, after serving for 34 years. According to Rohan Boyd, his father took his retirement to spend more time with his family, something policemen hardly get enough time to do while they serve, reassure and protect.

Sadly Boyd, affectionately called 'Denzil', only spent about three years with his loved ones before his untimely demise.

"The way I theorise it, the man knew there was a vacancy in heaven either in the kitchen or the entertainment department and God approved his application," Rohan Boyd said.

During his time in the force Boyd forged a close relationship with present Commissioner Owen Ellington and Ellington was in attendance and offered his condolences to Boyd's grieving relatives.

Both cops were transferred to work in St James in 2000.

"I must tell you that in my experience, working with Denzil Boyd is one that redefined the word friendship because Denzil is one who looks out for people. He would look out for me, he looked out for his colleagues and he looked out for the citizens. He was a personal friend and I take his death as a personal loss," Ellington said.

Boyd also became more active in the church after his retirement and served as the president of the men's fellowship and director of the skills centre board, among other duties at the Trinity Moravian Church in Kingston.

Boyd was born on May 1, 1949 in the old capital of Spanish Town, St Catherine to parents Harold and Lucille Boyd. He was the last of four boys and a girl for his parents.

As a child, his family relocated to Kingston and settled at Berwick Road and finally Chisolm Avenue.

He was educated at the Rousseau Primary School, Excelsior High and the University extra mural college.

Before enlisting in the constabulary, he held jobs in the shipping industry and at Metal Box.

But it was as a policeman that Boyd made a mark that will not be easily erased.

In 2005 he was awarded with a medal of honour for gallantry and also earned seven commendations for his dedication to policing.

He served in all Corporate Area police divisions, the Special Anti-crime Task Force, St James, the Criminal Investigation Branch and St Catherine South.

His nephew, Godfrey Boyd, was philosophical in his tribute to his dearly departed uncle.

"This is a lesson for the police. Instead of applying the full force of the law, counsel the people. That is why Uncle was so loved by the people," he said.

His words rang true as every seat inside the church and an additional 500 chairs that were placed under a tent in the churchyard were all taken. Officiating minister Reverend Jermaine Gibson urged the congregation to seek to improve their relations with others in Boyd's memory.

"We must learn and live out the principles of valuing people's lives and not destroying them," Gibson said.

There were dignitaries such as Finance Minister Peter Phillips -- who read the second lesson -- Director of Public Prosecutions Paula Llewellyn, High Court Judge Lennox Campbell, former minister of national security Derrick Smith and about 300 retired cops, including former Assistant Commissioner Donald Pusey and dancehall DJ Bounty Killer, but there were individuals from all strata of society.

Roy Lynsdell Boyd is survived by his wife Claudette, children Rohan, Dwight, Karen, Terry-Ann and Joy, grandchildren, a great-grandchild, his extended family in the constabulary and a host of friends.

His remains were interred in the Dovecot Memorial Park.

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