Byron Nelson Manley passed away June 26, 2015, at the Pioneer Medical Center in Big Timber, Montana. Byron was born in Pony, Montana, on Dec. 31, 1921, the son of Wilford (Bill) and Clela Hanson Manley. He was the second of three children. An older sister Barbara and a younger sister, Naomi preceded Byron in death.
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Byron attended school in Pony while helping out on his father's dairy farm. After high school, he worked in the mines at Pony, Norris and Whitehall until enlisting in the U.S. Navy during World War II. During that time, he served three years as a diesel mechanic. He served on the U.S.S. Gladiator, a mine sweeper in the South Pacific.
He married Arlene Grove, daughter of Lloyd and Neva Grove of Harrison on Nov. 15, 1941. He was discharged from the Navy at Bremerton, Washington, in December 1945, and resided in Seattle for several years. Their daughter Martha, was born in Seattle on March 7, 1949. Their marriage was dissolved in 1964.
Byron worked at selling insurance and later managed a chain of Home Portrait Studios in Washington, Oregon and California. In 1951, he purchased half interest in a grocery store in Big Timber, Davis and Manley AG Market. In 1963, he and partners Clyde Davis and Tom Findley built a new super market, the Big T. In 1974, after the death of both partners, Byron sold the Big T and went full time into raising Limousin cattle near Big Timber. He was a charter member and past President of the Montana Limousin Assoc. and served as a national director of the North American Limousin Foundation. He was also a charter member of the Spotted Ass Assoc.
He married Daphne Hansen of Billings in 1965 and gained a stepson, Joe Hansen. Daphne passed away in 1980.
In June 1980, he and two other partners started a small loan business in Jackson, Wyoming, which expanded into Real Estate, Insurance and Mortgages.
Byron married Audrey Powell, a friend from school days in 1981. Audrey passed away in 2013.
Byron was involved in the Big Timber community throughout his life. He was a member of American Legion Post 19 for 64 years, Jaycees, Doric Lodge #53, Livingston Scottish Rite, Albedo Shrine and Black Horse Patrol. Byron rose to the top of all his Masonic affiliations. He was Grand Worthy Patron of Eastern Star. The day he died, Byron was honored by the Grand Lodge of Montana with his induction into the Montana Masonic Hall of Fame. Byron was a member of First Congregational Church of Big Timber.
Byron had been a resident of the Boulder Meadows Assisted Living. He was known for his great sense of humor and quick wit. He enjoyed his computers and gadgets. He was very tender hearted and will be missed by his many friends and those he spent his afternoons with at the Legion Club in Big Timber.
Byron is preceded in death by his parents Wilford and Clela, sisters Barbara and Naomi. He was devastated by the untimely death of his step granddaughter, Abigail Hansen in 2004. He is survived by his daughter Martha (Denny) Dreyer of Seeley Lake; granddaughter DeAnna (Travis) Anderson, great-granddaughter Hadli of Miles City; great-grandson Lance Anderson of Dillon; stepdaughter Linda (Jack) Henry of Missoula and children; stepson Milt Powell of Minneapolis, Minnesota; stepson Joe Hansen (Joan) of Big Timber; Christine (Levi) and twins Bradley and Abigail of Salem, Oregon, brother-in-law Donald Moore, Bobbie Lou Olsen (a very special cousin, like a sister), cousin Darlene Twilliger; numerous nieces, nephews; great-grandnieces and great-grandnephews.
Viewing will be held from 3-9 p.m. Wednesday July 1 at Stenberg Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held 10 a.m. Thursday July 2nd at the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Big Timber with interment following at 2 p.m. at the Pony Cemetery in Pony, MT.
Memorials may be sent to:
- Spokane, 911 W. Fifth Avenue, Spokane, WA 99204, Big Timber Senior Center, PO Box 298, Big Timber, MT 59011, First Congregational Church, PO Box 238, Big Timber, MT 59011 or a
Condolences for the family may be made at www.stenbergfuneralhome.com
Stenberg Funeral Home - Big Timber
215 Anderson Street
Big Timber, MT 59011
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on June 30, 2015