Table of ‘Nalage’ founder Bob Boyle dies at 91

By Sara Bruestle | Jan 22, 2014
Bob Boyle had coffee at the Mukilteo cafe now known as Red Cup Cafe every day for 24 years. He passed away Jan. 5.

Bob Boyle, a regular at Red Cup Cafe and the founder of the Table of “Nalage,” died on Jan. 5 at his Everett home. He was 91.

Robert “Bob” Malcolm Boyle was born Nov. 23, 1922 at his parents home in Everett to Phimister Proctor Boyle and Marjorie Butterworth Boyle.

He attended Washington School and North Junior High in Everett. He graduated from Seattle's Lakeside High School in 1941.

After a year at Oberlin College in Ohio, he was nominated by Sen. Henry Jackson to the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, from which he graduated in 1945.

He served on USS Eversole during World War II and continued his career in the Navy until 1947. He returned to duty from 1953-1954 during the Korean War.

While docked in Tokyo, he renewed a friendship with future wife Mary Jeannette Hunt, who he had met in Seattle. Mary was serving with the U.S. State Department in Japan. They married on Feb. 27, 1954.

That year, the Boyles moved back to Everett and Bob worked for Everett Pulp and Paper Mill, which became Simpson and then Simpson-Lee Paper Co. They moved to Mukilteo 10 years later.

“That was the family favorite place in terms of where we lived,” said daughter Kimberly Wuest. “I never wanted to leave.

“When we passed the sign that says ‘Mukilteo welcomes you,’ he always said ‘Little old Muk.’ He always though it was amazing that the feeling of Mukilteo had remained; the closeness of people, even though it has grown larger.”

Boyle served as a board member of the Everett Chamber of Commerce, the Mukilteo Boys & Girls Club, Everett YMCA and the Snohomish County United Good Neighbors, now United Way.

The family moved to San Francisco and later Vancouver, B.C., for Boyle’s career.

Bob and Mary retired and moved back to Everett in 1980, and after some years, they moved again to Mukilteo.

Boyle founded the group of friends, now in their 80s and 90s, known as the Table of “Nalage,” that meets daily at 9:45 a.m. at the table near the door at the Mukilteo cafe now known as Red Cup Cafe.

“Don’t believe everything you hear at the Table of ‘Nalage,’” he said in a Beacon interview in 2010. “It’s the Table of ‘Nalage’ and not ‘Knowledge’ for a reason.”

Since the cafe on Fourth Street opened in 1989, Boyle had stopped there for coffee. His daily drink? A mocha.

He and his wife invited friends who grew up in Old Town, went to Rosehill School, graduated from Everett High School in 1940 or 1941 and served in World War II to join them.

“We were friends since kindergarten,” said Ed Taylor, who was a regular at the table. “We grew up together, helping each other when we could.”

The friends meet at the table from 9:45-11 a.m. daily to share coffee, sweets and memories of growing up or from during the war.

“Bob was many of our customers’ favorite because he was such a gentleman and was always kind to everyone,” said Marianne Brown, owner of the Red Cup Cafe.

“It was one of his priorities to get here every day. He liked his chocolate.”

Brown said Boyle liked to call her on his cell phone to order more coffee and sweets. It made her and her staff chuckle.

“Other members would not like it when he did, but he did it anyway,” she said.

After living five years with cancer, Boyle passed away, but not before going to Red Cup one last time on New Years Eve. He made the trip every other day near the end.

“He did a lot of listening in the last few months and not as much talking,” Wuest said, “but he enjoyed the company and being there.”

Wuest said Red Cup was one of her dad’s favorite places and that he had a fondness and appreciation for Brown and her staff.

“He was always so impressed with how much energy Marianne has,” she said. “He was very pleased she had the place and was having success.”

Bob was preceded in death by Mary, his wife of 46 years; his son, Bruce Michael Boyle; his son-in-law, Paul R. Wuest; and his long time companion, Clare Hulbert.

He is survived by his daughter, Kimberly Wuest; his sister, Marilyn Barton; grandchildren, Sarah Wuest Parlin, Steven Berg, M. Grace Berg and Mary Wuest; great-grandchildren, Rowan and Flynn Parlin; and numerous nieces and nephews.

A Celebration of Life was held Jan. 17 at the Red Cup Cafe with family and friends, including some from the Table of “Nalage.”

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Everett YMCA, United Way of Snohomish County and the Mukilteo Boys & Girls Club.

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