Well know for his skill at rugby, Boyau served in the infantry before the war. In 1915, while serving as a driver in the Army Service Corps, he requested a transfer to the French Air Service. Obtaining a Pilot's Brevet on 28 November 1915, he served as an instructor at Buc before being posted to N77 in September 1916. Before he was killed in action, Boyau downed 21 balloons and 14 enemy aircraft.
FAMOUS AIRMAN MISSING.
Paris, Friday.—It is reported that the aviator, Lieut. Boyau, is missing. He had to his record 35 victories.—Reuter.
Boyau, who was one of the best-known athletes in France, having captained French Rugby teams against England, Wales, and Scotland, was recently made an officer of the Legion of Honour for his prowess. He was to have been presented on the 29th with a diamond and platinum Legion of Honour cross bought by a halfpenny subscription made among all the athletes of France.
The Daily News - Saturday, September 21, 1918
"Pursuit pilot of audacious bravery. Three times cited in orders, and has to his credit an aircraft and a balloon. On 5 June  he destroyed another balloon. Forced to land in enemy territory, he repaired his plane and flew back over the lines at 200 meters altitude, under fire of enemy machine guns." Médaille Militaire citation
Légion d'Honneur (Officier)
"Pilot of remarkable bravery whose marvelous physical qualities are put to use by his most arduous spirit and fights at great heights. Magnificent officer with an admirable spirit of self-sacrifice, facing each day with the same smiling desire for new exploits, surpassing then succeeding. He excels in all branches of aviation; reconnaissance, photography in single-seaters, bombardments at low altitudes, attacks on ground troops, and is classed among the best pursuit pilots. He has reported twenty-seven victories, the last twelve in less than one month. Has downed sixteen balloons and eleven planes. Has the Médaille Militaire and Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur for feats of war. Eleven citations." Légion d'Honneur citation