Robert C. Manning died on Dec. 2, 2014. He was 32.
Rob was born on March 14, 1983, in White Plains, N.Y. His ancestry went back centuries in Aquinnah, formerly named Gay Head. He was the son of Jyl Manning of Aquinnah and the late Robert C. Heine of Amawalk, N.Y. He was baptized in the Gay Head Baptist Church in October 1983. His godparents were Albert and June Rose. He came to the Vineyard to reside with them at the age of 4, until his mother returned to the Vineyard a year later to raise him.
Rob was a beloved member of a large and loving extended family. In addition to his father, he was predeceased by his grandparents James and Jacqueline (Noble) Manning of Aquinnah; James and Anne (Ecclesine) Heine of White Plains, N.Y.; and his great-aunts Joyce Toland and June Noble of Pleasantville, N.Y. He was the great-grandson of Capt. Walter and Ada Manning.
Rob had a big heart, and would assist anyone he could along his path. He loved his children Robbie, Ryleigh, and Logan, and spent many happy hours with them at beach outings, powwows, the Ag Fair, the Flying Horses, and off-Island, visiting relatives near and far.
He was a member of the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah), where he was part of a film production group interviewing tribal elders, a teen mentor, and on occasion would drum with the Black Brook Drum, mostly when residing in Aquinnah. He enjoyed fishing, the powwows in Connecticut and Mashpee, and taking his children to the powwows in Aquinnah. He vacationed with his mother at Disney and Cozumel, Mexico, where they enjoyed Jet-Skiing, horseback riding on the beach, snorkeling, and touring the Mayan ruins. He loved his collection of comic books, baseball cards, CDs, DVDs, and pay-per-view wrestling. He and his father went to Wrestlemania at the Boston Garden, the highlight of both their lives.
He attended the Oak Bluffs School, Tisbury School, the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School, and took courses at Cape Cod Community College. He had recently been studying water treatment plant operation under the guidance of Steve Vancour. He had worked for the Town of Tisbury DPW for quite a few years until September 2014. He also worked as security for Dreamland part-time on weekends.
He is survived by his mother Jyl Manning of Aquinnah; his uncle Albert E. Rose of Oak Bluffs; his aunt June Manning of Aquinnah; his stepmother, Paula B. Heine; his stepbrothers Liam and Conor Heine of upstate New York; his aunt Anne Louise Heine-McGonigel of Washington State; his uncle Karl and wife Terry Heine and their daughter Jesse of upstate New York; his uncle James (Jay) Heine and his children Mary and David of Florida; and his cousins Linda and Joe Hobbs and their children Jason, Lauren, and Chelsea of Buchanan, N.Y., whom he was very close to, and loved dearly. He is also survived by his three children, Robert E. Manning of Aquinnah, who resides with his grandmother Jyl Manning, and Ryleigh J. and Logan J. Manning, of Oak Bluffs, who reside with their mother, Samantha J. BenDavid.
Rob touched the hearts of many during his short life here on earth, and will remain in our hearts forever. He had a very gentle soul, and was generous with his time and energy. A memorial service will be held Saturday, April 18, at 11 am at the Gay Head Baptist Church in Aquinnah, the Rev. Roger Spinney officiating. Donations in memory of Robert C. Manning may be sent to Hospice of Martha’s Vineyard, P.O. Box 1748, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568; Serving Hands, P.O. Box 4685, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568; M.V. Community Services, 111 Edgartown Road, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568.