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Fool.com: JABoa - 2nd Runner-Up [Special] February 27, 2002

The 2nd runner-up in the voting for the 2001 Feste Award is Jim Boa (JABoa). Sadly, Jim passed away in early May of last year. We consider Jim's nomination an enormous testament to the friendships he developed and the wonderful contributions that he made over the years in the Fool Community. Jim lived in Massachusetts and was a mathematical genius, working in the aerospace and defense field. Rumor has it that more than one of Jim's professional missives ended up in a certain "oval office."

His love of numbers and his willingness to teach people made for a great combination, especially at a place like the Fool. When asked where he received his investment advice, Jim would explain that his investment advice comes from Elvis on Mars. By all accounts, Jim Boa was a wonderful person with a sharp wit and a brilliant mind, calling them as he saw them, and never afraid to tell the emperor that he had no clothes. Jim, we miss you, and we raise a Martini glass in your honor today.

Each Armistice Day, shortly after midnight, Jim would post the following poem. As one friend acknowledged, "No mere irony, the poem; those are the silent thoughts of someone who knows his time is near."

An Irish Airman Foresees his Death

I know that I shall meet my fate
Somewhere among the clouds above;
Those that I fight I do not hate,
Those that I guard I do not love;
My country is Kiltartan Cross,
My countrymen Kiltartan's poor;
No likely end could bring them loss
Or leave them happier than before.
Nor law, nor duty bade me fight,
Nor public men, nor cheering crowds,
A lonely impulse of delight
Led to this tumult in the clouds;
I balanced all, brought all to mind,
The years to come seemed waste of breath,
A waste of breath the years behind
In balance with this life, this death.

--William Butler Yeats, 1919

We'd like to close today's short tribute to Jim with links to some of the posts made in his honor. We hope you enjoy them.


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