Emily Annette Trapnell Manning, a tenacious and kind soul with an inquisitive mind, died suddenly and peacefully in her sleep after a full and adventurous life on Thursday, Jan. 9, 2014. She was 84.
A post-it note found above her desk written in her elderly handwriting is a quote from Emily Dickenson, “That it will never come again is what makes life so sweet.”
Born in rural Georgia five months before the Great Depression to a schoolteacher mother and railroad agent father, she became a life-long voracious reader and intrepid traveler.
After graduating from Georgia Women’s College, Emily received a scholarship to Duke University, earning a Masters Degree in Social Studies and Spanish Literature. She was completing her studies in Lima, Peru, when she met her future husband, Blair Manning, a young and persuasive engineer for Caterpillar Tractor Company. Together they raised their two daughters Ellen and Cynthia while living in Peru, Argentina, Brazil, Scotland, Switzerland and Peoria, Ill. They retired in Asheville, N.C., but their explorations of other countries never ended.
That she was quick with self-effacing humor and endlessly curious about anything and anyone, especially their travels, made her the perfect listener. It is difficult to imagine anyone leaving a conversation with her who didn’t think of the word “delightful.”
Emily chuckled at her foibles at forgetfulness, and was game for all things new - a round of family dominos, mastering e-mail, dining out, or having her picture taken with a silly hat. She was the kind of person who sent clipped magazine articles in the mail rather than sending a link in an e-mail, and preferred talking to texting. Emily especially loved books, and left behind her at Deerfield a professionally organized library.
Her love of family and friends, her kindness and resiliency, her humility and warmth will be greatly missed by all her knew her. Emily was preceded in death by her husband, Blair L. Manning; she is survived by her two daughters, Ellen and Cindy Manning; son-in-law, Mark Barroso; sister, Laura Hillman; niece, Terry Baird; and nephew, David Hillman.