Story last updated at 1:57 p.m. Thursday, November 28, 2002

James Colby Manley - Obituary
photo: obits

James Colby Manley  
James Colby Manley, born Sept. 13, 1919, in Canyonville, Ore., lived, laughed, loved and gave to life 83 years. He died Nov. 21, 2002. at South Peninsula Hospital in Homer. A service was held Sunday, Nov. 24, 2002, at St. John's Catholic Church in Homer.

Mr. Manley joined the Army National Guard at age 15 and entered the University of Oregon three years later, in 1937. When he was 19 in 1938 he volunteered for flight school from the Guard and was transferred to the newly formed Army Air Corps. There he began his love affair with flying and continued to be a pilot for the next 52 years. During World War II he piloted many missions over the "Hump," or the Himalayas, from India to China.

After the war, he finished his forestry degree at Oregon State University. During that time he also fought forest fires by flying smoke jumpers to their jump sites. He served as a flight officer and adviser during the Korean and Vietnam conflicts, retiring from the Air Force in 1966. According to his family, he was one of the country's first pilots.

After retirement, Mr. Manley and his family moved to Homer, where he continued to lead an active life. He started Manley Terminals and served a term on the city of Homer's City Council and Planning Commission. Mr. Manley loved nature and the outdoors and especially enjoyed hunting and fishing at his beloved China Poot cabin.

He was also a horticulturist. He enjoyed growing numerous varieties of fruit-bearing trees and vegetables, and taught others how to grow temperate fruits despite the local climate.

His family said, "Jim made kindness, friendship and growing beautiful things a very 'Manley' thing."

Mr. Manley was preceded in death by his wife Barbara, brother Earl, sister Anna May and son David.

He is survived by his wife, Louise, daughters Nancy, Dianna and Janet; sons James Jr. and John; grandchildren Corby, Suzanne, Brent, Kara, Alyssa, Amy, Katie, Shannon, Lauren and Adam; great-grandson Andrew; and his loyal Star.