Doug Manly, 95, long-time Fredonia resident and former president of the Red Wing Company died on March 19, 2022, following a brief illness.
Doug was born Feb. 27, 1927, in Rochester, N.Y. He grew up in Rochester with his parents ,Earl and Marion and his brother David during the Great Depression. At 14, he began living away from home (having negotiated room and board with an elderly widow in exchange for household chores) so that he could finish high school in Brockport, N.Y. Doug worked throughout high school at various food processing plants, cleaning up and loading trucks. In the summer of 1940, Doug began working on a cousin’s fruit farm for $1 a day plus room and board. After World War II started, minors working on farms were allowed to miss school when they were needed on the farm. Throughout high school Doug worked on sunny days and went to school on rainy days until all of the apples had been picked.
Doug entered the U.S. Navy at 17 and was assigned to a destroyer, the USS Ault, in the South Pacific. The Ault’s main purpose was to protect the other ships in the fleet from kamikaze planes. After six months at sea, Doug was an eyewitness to history when the Ault was anchored next to the USS Missouri as Instrument of Surrender documents were signed, which effectively ended the war.
After the war Doug enrolled at Cornell University on the GI Bill. At Cornell, Doug met his future wife, Jane Waite, and graduated in three and a half years. Doug and Jane had three children: David, Mark and Marilyn before moving to Fredonia in 1957 for Doug to begin work at Red Wing. Tragically, Jane died of cancer in 1961 and David of AIDS in 1986.
Acting as a representative for Cornell, Doug later met and married the Fredonia high school guidance counselor Ann James. Doug and Ann had two children, Susan and James.
Doug rose through the ranks at Red Wing, eventually being named president in 1976. He retired in 1989, having seen the company through a robust period of success.
Following his retirement, Doug travelled to China, Africa and Eastern Europe assisting food manufacturers in developing their factories and products.
Doug was actively involved in the community, joining Fredonia Rotary in 1960. He served on the board of Brooks Memorial Hospital and the Fredonia College Foundation. He held membership and offices in the Northern Chautauqua, Dunkirk and Fredonia Chambers of Commerce. Doug was the prime sponsor of the Story Telling Festival held at the Fredonia 1891 Opera House and for many years was a regular performer at local assisted living centers for an hour of “light Irish standup comedy.” Doug and Ann set up several scholarships through the Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation and the Fredonia College Foundation.
Doug was a wonderful story teller, an avid tennis player, snowmobiler, ping pong player and cross-country skier. He enjoyed hosting dinner parties, a good Irish joke and making his own beer. He loved crossword puzzles and was deeply committed to his family.
Doug is survived by his children: Mark (and wife, Tamara Manly), Marilyn (and husband, Hank Jesserer), Susan (and husband, John Pelosi) and Jim (and wife, Laura Light); as well as 10 adored grandchildren and 13 adorable great-grandchildren.
A celebration of Doug’s life will be held Saturday, Aug. 20, 2022, at the SUNY Fredonia Steel Hall Natatorium, (Where reserved parking will be available), from 2-4 p.m., with remembrances being shared from 2 pm-2:30 pm and military honors accorded by the Dunkirk Joint Veterans Council at 3 p.m. The shared remembrances and military honors will be lived streamed on Doug’s site on the Larson-Timko Funeral Home web site, larsontimkofuneralhome.com.
In lieu of flowers, dona-tions can be made to the David E. Manly Scholarship, the Ann James Manly Scholarship or the TJ Summers Scholarship through the Fredonia College Foundation https:// give-to-fredonia.formstack.com/ forms/give_now or the Chautauqua County Rural Ministry in Dunkirk.
Online condolences may be made at larsontimko funeralhome.com