Walter Manley in 2008 with a 28 pound striper (held by Richie Gaines) caught in the Chesapeake on a trip with SAE fraternity brothers. Shortly after, Walter caught the record 49 pounder that year and needed all of his 6’3″ height and 215 pounds to bring the fish to the boat.
Walter, third from left, in 2014, at his Rabbit Hill home reception for Brandin Cooks, Biletnikoff Award winner.
Walter in 1984 having just completed his presidency of the Lakeland Bar Association and the Polk County Legal Aid Society, just before learning that he had been selected as the Florida Bar’s Pro Bono Award winner.
In Durham, NC, in 1999, former DC US Court of Appeals judge and Solicitor General close friend Ken Starr, beloved and close friend Duke Law Professor Robinson O. Everett, and Walter enjoy a dinner in the private room at Bullock’s Bar-B-Cue. Perhaps America’s most respected authority on military justice (he had served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces as chief judge for ten years), “Robbie O” had graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College in 1947 at 19 years of age. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School where he was a member of Harvard Law Review. I could not have had a better friend at Duke and until their deaths than Robbie Everett (Durham’s most outstanding citizen) or the equally brilliant and kind-hearted Duke Law Professor Kazimierz Grzybowski.
Founding Trustee & Past Chairman Walter Manley II with 2019 Biletnikoff winner Ja’Marr Chase at welcome dinner on February 14, 2020.
Expert skier and member of PSIA (Professional Ski Instructors of America) Ben Manley, taking time out for spring break in 2009, and great skier, instructor, and 26-years family friend Don Hill, here at Alta, Utah. Don and Ben ski where few are ever tempted to go—deep powder on the other side of mountains & through extremely steep chutes.
2018 Kansas Rio. Worked this 4 year old, 23 pound gobbler for 2 hours. Nailed him at 43 yards.
Linda, 5’4″ and 115 pounds, with her 24 pound striper in 2008: 115 pounds beat 24 pounds.
Walter and wife Linda Benear enjoying a dinner in Tulsa, OK, with Linda’s parents SuElla and Paul Reagan. SuElla, educated at Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas, was a Tulsa school counselor for many years. Paul was educated at Yale College, Yale Medical School, Harvard School of Health, and completed residency at Johns Hopkins Medical School. He was an internist and his specialty was cardiology. They were an interesting and highly intelligent couple, who had met as classmates at Little Rock High School.
Paul’s father, also a distinguished doctor, was close friends with U.S. Senator Joseph Robinson, Senate majority leader, former governor of Arkansas, and the 1928 Democratic Vice-Presidential nominee. Robinson brought FDR and Mrs. Roosevelt to Doctor Reagan’s house during a June, 1936 trip celebrating Arkansas’s Centennial. While young Paul took care of the Roosevelt dog, President Roosevelt broadcast a radio address from the Reagan house in Little Rock. Nearly 20 years later Paul, while in residency at Johns Hopkins, and Mrs. Roosevelt met in Washington Union train station in D.C. While chatting, she thanked him for taking good care of their setter Jack during the Roosevelts’ visit to Paul’s house back in June, 1936.
Walter, flying his hot air balloon, Big Sky, over Florida Field during Florida’s September 11, 1982, victory over the Southern Cal Trojans–17 to 9.
Just before takeoff at the O’Connell Center for Walter’s Big Sky hot air balloon flight over the Florida–Southern Cal game.
Walter holds FAA licenses in sailplanes, hot air balloons, and power planes. He named his Raven hot air balloon Big Sky in tribute to Montana. He took instructions in preparation for his FAA exam from trailblazing balloonist, exceptional attorney, and friend, the late Kingswood Sprott, Jr. Noted, late sailplane pilot and friend Doug Gaines gave Walter his first sailplane flight in 1970. His instructors were noted pilots and mechanics Pat Hange and Harriet Hamilton, flying out of Circle X airport in Mulberry, Florida.
Walter’s FAA license reflecting pilot ratings in fixed-wing power planes, sailplanes (gliders), and hot air balloons. At the time he earned his FAA hot air pilot rating, fewer than 100 pilots in the world had achieved all three ratings.
Marjorie during Christmas of her sophomore year at Duke.
Cameron: Captain, cornerback, receiver, kicker, exceptional teammate and attitude, Texan, and three-time conference champion.
Cameron with his Texas Class 6 Division II state championship game medallion at AT&T Stadium. He is one of 3 freshmen on the varsity, which lost the state championship game on December 21, 2020, in front of 35,000 fans. Guyer was the 14th ranked high school football team in the nation before the championship game.
Denton Guyer Wildcat & three-year letterman junior Cameron Posada on December 18, 2021, at AT&T Stadium following Guyer’s 40-21 6A Texas state championship game loss to Austin Westlake. Guyer led 14-13 at the half.
Cameron, who will win his 4th football letter, is the kicker for MaxPreps #16 rated (#1 in Texas) high school football team in America, Guyer High School
Cameron on his way to homecoming dance in October, 2021
An exceptional leaper, Madeline is first team outside hitter on the 7th grade Harpool Longhorns volleyball team.
Madeline, 14 years old, on prom night in October, 2021.
Another Black Diamond bit the dust: Cameron, Madeline, and 20 years pal and ski instructor Don Hill at Alta in March of 2018.
Walter as an eight-year-old third grader (he had begun first grade at 5 years of age) at graduation from the Child’s Garden of Learning in 1955 with his favorite teacher Mrs. Spense. Because Mrs. Mitchell recognized that I could speak louder than anyone else in third grade, I had the honor of introducing the keynote speaker at the graduation ceremony. His mother, then Marjorie Watkins, had attended the same school in the late 1920s when it was run by Mrs. Eva Chisholm, who died in 1931. Subsequently, Genevieve Mitchell was headmistress until the school closed in 1974.
Linda, after shooting her limit, in a Louisiana duck blind in 2008; her green eyes helped camouflage her in the blind. Linda has a profound love of animals, especially dogs, including our English setters and Labrador retrievers. We financially support Best Friends Animal Society in Utah, where we ski.
Rice University Professor of Economics Amelie with John in 2014.
Cameron and Madeline hiking in Glacier NP in 2020
Cameron at the Springhill, MT, house in 2020, with the Bridger Mountains to the east.
One of 8 steelhead over 36 inches in length caught by Walter with a fly rod on Idaho’s Clearwater River in the spring of 2016; this was 42 inches and 22 pounds.
Walter was the subject of this Gray’s Sporting Journal photo-essay article in 1994, with his fishing the highly technical, challenging Nelson’s, Depuy’s, and Armstrong spring creeks in Paradise Valley, a few miles south of Livingston, Montana.
Beautiful original print with inscription gifted to Walter for his catching “the big fish used in A River Runs Through It film.”
“August 1, 1996
To Walter Manley II
Thanks for catching the big fish used in A River Runs Through it.
Depuy’s Spring Creek”
Bo and Belle with a limit of Hungarian partridges in 2016 near Judith Gap, Montana, with the Snowy Mountains to the right and the Little Belts to the left.
AKC (horseback) field trial champions Luke and Scrappy, and Babe, “the greatest English setter” in the opinion of one noted North Florida plantation dog trainer/handler, at our Rabbit Hill residence in Tallahassee, Florida.
49 pound 11 oz. Chesapeake Bay striped bass.
About to land a 125 pound sailfish on a fly rod in the Pacific Ocean off Guatemala in 1998.
Springtime at Manleywood (designed by noted architect Roger Leibin of Central Florida) in Tallahassee 2021.
Fly fishing near Big Timber and the Crazy Mountains in 2000 with Linda, Amelie and a good friend.
Budding Eagle Scout Ben Manley as a 4-year old.
Ben’s 121 merit badges–all available at time.
Eagle Scout Ben Manley at the celebration of the belvedere (his Eagle Scout project) at St. Phillip AME Church in Tallahassee, FL. Pictured on the far left is Rev. Q. E. Miller of St. Phillip. Ben addressed the St. Phillip’s congregation that day. The church was established in 1891.
Ribbons for Field Trial Champions Luke, Belle, and Scrappy from AKC horseback mounted field trials from Hartford to Houston through the quail belt in the South.
Plaque at memorial on Montana property by Ross Creek: Father & 3 uncles who served with distinction in WWII: Army Lt. Colonel Walter W. Manley; Army Major Benjamin Moore Watkins, Jr., WWII P-47 ace and winner of 3 Distinguished Flying Crosses; Marine Captain Benjamin Cunningham Yancey Fuller, ranked 1st in Naval Flight School, Pensacola, FL, KIA, Pacific; and Navy Lt. Commander Charles Manley.
May evening Ross Peak vista from Montana property in Springhill.
Belle de Highclere: Titled through the Hunting Retrievers Club.
Wyoming: 2 limits each of pheasants and Hungarian Partridges.
33″, 13.5 pound redfish caught in April, 2022, off St. Marks, FL
26″ brown trout on Missouri River in June, 2018–a brownie called by guide Jared Edens “one of the two largest” he had ever seen caught on the Missouri.
Madeline, 15 years old, is selected 2022 Defensive MVP for Guyer High School soccer team.
My 4 setters (3 AKC FC champions with 57 ribbons from Hartford to Houston and the quail belt in between) and me after a thrilling quail hunt near my house at a friend’s plantation.
The setters always jumped in the trunk when I carried my shotgun to the car. It was a 15 minute ride to some hot wild quail hunting where my hunting jeep was parked. Babe (2nd from right and the mother of Belle) is dead now–she was an outstanding bird finder. In the late 1990s, on a hunt with my 44 years-long friend Wayne Todd, Jr., the finest gun/fisher in North Florida, she pointed 20 coveys of wild quail by herself in one 6 hour hunt. She pointed 16 or more wild coveys on 4 other occasions that year. The fabulous dog man Lee Stuckey stated she was the best setter he had ever seen in the field. She always outhunted my 3 AKC Field Trial Champions, but she had shorter legs and would not have been as good in field trials where “big-running” dogs are the first to the quail and get the “find.” However, in the world of wild birds, Babe was the queen. In the 1998-99 season, she pointed 392 coveys of wild quail. I miss her. She lived to be almost 17 years, extremely long among setters.
AKC (the horseback field trials–the judge, the handler, and the handler’s scout are all mounted) Field Trial Champion Luke de Highclere on point backed by AKC Field Trial Champion Belle de Highclere at our local plantation–a covey of wild quail about to explode.
Luke on point. The covey is very close.
Eaglerock Scrap Iron, AKC Field Trial Champion, on point with a covey of wild quail ready to explode. Scrappy is the most athletic setter I have had. She is a tri-color.
Scrappy backing Belle. Basic courtesy. Utmost respect.
Tricolor English setter Stoney in foreground and Babe de Highclere, my greatest-ever bird finder, on point on a covey of wild quail at our Straw Pond Plantation in January 1997.
Belle with nice work on three Montana pheasants near Hardin in 2018.
Belle retrieves a Montana pheasant.
Another Montana limit of pheasant thanks to Belle’s superb work.
Normanie de Highclere on a solid point of a covey of North Florida quail in 2019.
Cow elk, 580 pounds, taken at 386 yards in Wyoming.
Old, 220 pound mule deer taken in Wyoming at 200 yards.
Walter six for six on ducks (5 drakes/1 hen) with forty yard doubles on teal. Concordia, KS, in October 2019
On a cold Montana day, the Lab has done her job well.
Four wild roosters up/ same four killed today in Tipton, KS. Limit is four a day in KS.
Walter won several highly contested skeet championships in the 1980s breaking 98 or 99 birds. Above is a crystal bowl as first prize. Walter was trained in the English method of shotgunning.
Bo on point of a covey of wild quail in south Georgia in February of 2021. He pointed 11 different coveys of wild quail that day.
Montana house designed by Nick Fullerton.
Black-eyed Susans in bloom.
Memorial Park on Montana property in salute to father and three uncles who served with valor in WWII.
Bridge over Ross Creek designed by Linda Benear