Barbara Lee (Clark) Boyd
IN THE BEGINNING
Barbara Lee (Clark) Boyd was born on July 4, 1928, in Cleveland, Ohio, to the union of Alexander and Hattie Beatrice (Logan) Clark. Barbara was the second oldest of four siblings.
Barbara attended Cleveland public schools and graduated from her dream school, John Hay High School in 1947. Later in life, she became a member of New Community Bible Fellowship.
In 1950, Barbara was joined in holy matrimony to Arthur Boyd. To this union, one son, Arthur Boyd, II, was born. Following her divorce in 1956, she became a single parent.
Although she was a single mother, she was active in several civic organizations: such as the Order of Eastern Stars St. Theresa Chapter No 222; The Future Outlook League, led by her uncle John O. Holly, Jr., where she served on the Executive Committee; as well as volunteering for several political campaigns. In her 30s, along with younger sister Rosetta, they joined Pat’s Bronze Models and participated in regional pageants and fashion shows around Cleveland. Thus, began her love of fashion.
Barbara and Rosetta had an unbreakable bond. So, after raising her son to adulthood, she thought nothing of accepting the responsibility of continuing to raise her two nieces, Cheretta and Paula, then 14 and 7 years old, after her sister’s passing in 1976.
In 1967, Barbara was hired as the receptionist for the City of Cleveland Mayor’s office. During her career she also served as the receptionist for five administrations: Ralph S. Locher (1962-1967); Carl B. Stokes (1967-1971); Ralph J. Perk (1971-1977); Dennis Kucinich (1977-1979); and George Voinovich (1980-1989).
It was written that Barbara had “an almost legendary reputation for patience, caring and friendliness.” A few choice accolades given to Barbara during her time with the City included being presented with Keys to the City of Cleveland, from both Mayors Kucinich and Voinovich; being appointed an Honorary Mayor for the City of Cleveland on April 27, 1989, by Mayor Voinovich; and being awarded the City of Cleveland’s first Employee of the Year recipient, in 1986.
Long before computers and voicemail systems were used in the workplace, Barbara was the voice of the Mayor’s office handling an estimated 250 calls a day, while greeting all walk-in visitors. As one of the most visible employees at City Hall, she often said her job was primarily to help people. She gave each caller her full attention because each problem was serious to that caller. Her supervisor described her perfectly, calling her “grace under fire,” “always calm and professional…her manner never brusque, condescending or impatient…an asset to the entire office--dependable, conscientious and enthusiastic…rarely complained and was quick to lend morale support when things aren’t going well.”
After 22 years with the City of Cleveland, Barbara retired to enjoy quiet time with her family and friends. Attending church with family on Sunday, and then going out to eat, was the highlight of her week. She enjoyed listening to music, watching musicals, watching Victor Newman on the Young & Restless, westerns, the Cleveland Cavaliers basketball team, her Kardiac Kids (the Cleveland Browns football team), and eating out on the weekends. In later years, she loved living with her Golden Girls family, under the care of Cheryl Ellis, and Bob Evans, in Mayfield Heights, became her favorite restaurant where everyone knew her name.
Known to some as “Babs,” or “Barbie,” she was ultimately and affectionately, simply called Aunt Barbara. She had big cheeks, a beautiful smile, a warm heart, and a sharp tongue all wrapped in an elegant, poised, sophisticated persona.
After living 91 years, and enduring the decline associated with dementia, Aunt Barbara entered enteral rest, at her niece’s home, where she was called from labors to her heavenly reward, on Saturday morning, May 9. She joins her mother, Hattie; grandmother Lilly Holly Logan; and three siblings who preceded her in death: Alexander Clark; Rosetta Mae (Clark) Newman; and Melvin Douglas Clark.
She leaves to cherish her memory, one child, Arthur Boyd II; six Grandchildren, Latoya “Cookie” Burgess, Patrice Reynolds (Benjamin, III), Arthur Boyd, III (Jamalya), Artemas Boyd; Ramona Arleta Hunley (Jjan), and Monique Artrice Boyd; two Nieces, Cheretta Moore (Darryl) and Paula Newman; two Grandnieces, Turea Moore and Lauren Moore; one Grandnephew, Darryl “Cord” Moore, II; eighteen Great Grandchildren, Chantell Burgess, Tryesha Blackshear, Chira Blackshear, Tyrone Blackshear, Jr., Paris Gosha-Forman, Brooke Reynolds, Benjamin Reynolds, IV, Arthur Boyd, IV, Alexis Boyd, Aunyx Boyd, Arion Boyd, Arielle Boyd, Artemas Boyd, II, Artianna Boyd, Bryce Boyd, Emmille Hunley, Je’veon Hunley, and Ramona Hunley; nine Great-Great Grandchildren, McKyla Todd, De’John Peterson, Jadon McClain, Morgan McClain, Joshua McClain, Megan McClain, Kaysen Foster, Arthur Carter Boyd, and a ninth great-great granddaughter on the way; along with a host of family, caregivers, and friends.
PRIVATE SERVICES: Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the homegoing service will be private. The family has decided to have a memorial celebration at a later date. In the meantime, we ask that you share memories, stories, and photos on this E. F. Boyd & Son Funeral Home website. We will continue to look to these shared stories as comfort as we move through the days ahead.
IN LIEU OF FLOWERS OR TREES, please make contributions in memory of Barbara Lee Boyd to the Dementia Society of America by mail to PO Box 600, Doylestown, PA 18901, or online at www.DementiaSociety.org/donate.”
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Barbara Lee (Clark) Boyd, please visit our floral store.
Dementia Society of America
PO Box 600, Doylestown PA 18901