Kenneth Dewey Manring, Jan. 12, 1945, born and raised in Reidsville, entered heaven’s gates Wednesday, June 7, 2023, as he was completely surrounded from head to toe by his family who loved him beyond measure.
Miraculously, God showed us that time was growing short, and we were all loving on him, holding his hands, touching his arms, and kissing his beautiful face as he took his last breath ever so peacefully. We told him that we would be OK for him to take Jesus’ hand and that Grandma-ma, Mama June, Papa, Jordy and Jared were waiting for him and that is what he did, almost immediately.
Nothing is quite as strong as the gentle strength of a father’s hand. Strength is a word that our family often uses to describe this precious man, our daddy and our children’s Papa Blue.
Throughout our lives he showed and taught us strength, honesty, kindness, respect, courage, strong work ethic, and to always have a positive outlook. During his illness, and even when we knew he was feeling his worst, he never, ever complained. Not Once.
Respect…Oh how we respect this man, and he deserved every ounce of respect he was given.
Kenneth was an outdoorsman, loved nature, the water, all animals, hunting, and most of all fishing. He won many fishing tournaments over the years, but what meant the most to him was teaching his grandsons all of his fishing secrets.
He took great pride in his home and yard and was meticulous how he maintained them. He took pride in everything he did and taught all of us to do things right the first time, yet he was the humblest man you would ever meet. One example that Kelly and I have talked about, and smiled so many times over is an experience we both had at separate times over the last few weeks. Daddy would be sitting at the open front door with the sun shining on his face and as we got close to him, we both said, “Daddy, your eyes!” They were an electric blue that stopped us in our tracks, and we were in complete awe of the beauty of those eyes, and he would just smile the sweetest smile and say, “Thank ya!” His nickname at work, (American Tobacco Company) and with his friends was “Moody Blue”. While working full time for American and raising a family Kenneth attended college and earned his machinist degree. He could repair anything that was broken and create parts using his machinist skills.
Special mention: Mandy Meeks provided the absolute best care for both of our parents and spoiled them rotten. She always went above and beyond whenever they needed her, day, or night. She loved them as her own, as they did her, and we are so thankful for her.
He was a private man and with respect to that, we will be honoring his wishes by having a private service with family. At this time, we would also like to mention what a blessing Hospice of Rockingham County has been to us, with special appreciation to our angel nurse, Carol Walker Vanderwerf, who made this process easier, not only caring about Daddy but all of us as well. We cannot praise Hospice enough and recommend them to all families who have a loved one in need of their services. They are a true Godsend!
Kenneth was preceded in death by his wife Virginia Toler Manring; his parents, Dewey A. and June Cantrell Manring; and his grandsons Jordan Archibald and Jared Archibald.
Kenneth is survived by his daughters Maria Manring Hudson and Kelly Manring Bratcher and husband John; grandchildren Joshua Chilton, Garrett Collins, William Hudson, and Jaidan Archibald; great grandchildren Kensleigh Archibald and Abrielle Archibald; sister Susan Manring Pyrtle; niece Tanya Renee Chilton; and extended family.