James “Jim” Otis Boyette, 87, passed away on April 16, 2019, at the Montana Veterans Home in Columbia Falls, with his family surrounding him with love.
James was born on Aug. 12, 1931, in Chadbourn, North Carolina, to George Otis Boyette and Kiva Lina (Brown) Boyette. He finished high school in only three years at the age of 16. He then continued to work at the family Otis Wholesalers and Boyette Grocery Store.
He enlisted in the Air Force on July 19, 1950. On Oct. 13, 1953, he entered Officer Training Course. James retired from active duty as a major on July 31, 1970, as a master navigator, having served two tours in Vietnam where he had earned the Distinguished Flying Cross with one oak leaf cluster, Air Medal with six oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal with one bronze service star, the Vietnam Service Medal with four bronze service stars, and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal.
He married Alice Anna (Mowatt) on Aug. 2, 1957. They celebrated 42 years together.
James worked as the business manager at the Montana State Prison from 1971 to 1977. Then moved on to selling Prudential Securities and Insurance in Missoula and Kalispell until his full retirement. James earned a sociology degree in 1976 and a business administration degree in 1979 from the University of Montana.
James lived in Bigfork for over 29 years where he enjoyed feeding the wild turkey, working on old vehicles and remodeling his home.
He was preceded in death by both of his parents, and four brothers, George Otis, Charles Otis, William Otis and Robert Otis.
He is survived by his five children, Sherri Elizabeth Boyette of Salt Lake City, Rebecca Ann Kress of Missoula, James Kevin Boyette (Hiromi) of Tomah, Wisconsin, Michael Scott Boyette (Jeanette) of Salt Lake City, and Edwin Arlington Boyette (Yun) of Reston, Virginia; plus six grandchildren, Dalis, Jessica, Brandon, Frankie, Kody, Parker and Michaela.
Family asks for memorials to be made to the First Presbyterian Church of Kalispell, or the Montana Veterans Home of Columbia Falls.
A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 20, at the First Presbyterian Church of Kalispell.
Arrangements are under the care of Johnson-Gloschat Funeral Home.