Staff Sergeant James P. Boyd was born in Sweetwater, Texas on October 21, 1917.
Trained as a small arms mechanic, he was assigned to the 17th Ordnance Company (Armored), and in September 1941 was shipped with his unit to the Philippines.
Attached to the Provisional Tank Group on the Island of Luzon, he and other armament mechanics of his unit modified more than 1,000 rounds of World War I, 37mm, anti-personnel ammunition so that the Tank Group could more effectively combat invading Japanese troops. Throughout the campaign, he also braved enemy fire to make on-site repairs to the Group's weapons.
After the surrender of American forces on the Bataan Peninsula on April 8, 1942, he and several other soldiers escaped into the mountains around Luzon.
For two years, he operated with the Tala guerrillas, teaching them how to maintain their old Springfield and Enfield rifles. He provided repairs and maintenance expertise to keep the weapons operational. He also provided General MacArthur's intelligence officers with needed information on the deployment and disposition of the Japanese defenders of Luzon.
Sgt. Boyd attained the rank of Staff Sgt. before leaving the service in January 1946. He has continued to honor the Ordnance Corps through his accomplishments as a private citizen and community leader.