James Lowell "Jim" Manning, Jr.

Photo of James Lowell "Jim" Manning, Jr.
James Lowell (Jim) Manning Jr., 79, of Little Rock, passed away Tuesday, October 22. Jim and his twin brother were born in Jonesboro on March 18, 1940 to Coach Lowell "Hoss" and Clyde Manning. Jim was preceded in death by all three. Jim grew up in Little Rock where, being a coach's son, he was a natural competitor and had a love of all sports. Jim's most fond memories were of his days playing baseball. In 1952, his Little Rock All-Star Little League team became the first Arkansas team to make it to the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pa. In 1957, he played for his friend and mentor, Buddy Coleman on the Coleman Dairy American Legion team. The team, after a hard battle, won the Arkansas state championship. Jim attended Little Rock Central High School and U.A.L.R. (then L.R.U.) where he played basketball, and was also President of the social club Chi Sigma Epsilon, that obtained the charter to become the Theta Eta Chapter of Kappa Sigma Fraternity. Jim had graduated before the first pledge class was initiated, but in 2018, Jim was proudly initiated with his grandson, Clay Caffey. Jim served in the Air National Guard 123rd Reconnaissance Technical Squadron. After his father's death, he began working at Spaulding Sporting Goods. Jim was an avid golfer and in 1964 opened the Arnold Palmer Driving Range on South University. It was during this time he met his wife Carolyn. Jim and Carolyn opened the first Bonanza Steak House in Arkansas at Asher and University in 1966, where they worked together in the store until the birth of their daughter, Tracy, in 1968. Over the next several years, Jim and his partners opened Bonanza Steak Houses in Arkansas, Kansas and Arizona. Jim's dad, Hoss, took him to Oaklawn Park to his first horserace, when he was a young boy. He was immediately hooked and thoroughbred racing, by far, became his greatest passion. The Mannings had the thrill of owning several well-known horses including Dragset, Cisk and Silver Survivor. He was also a part owner of a thoroughbred breeding and training farm in Okolona, Ark. Spending time in Hot Springs of course introduced Jim to his favorite restaurant and in 1972, Jim and three friends purchased Coy's Steakhouse in Hot Springs from owner Coy Theobalt. The Mannings operated the restaurant until it burned in 2009. Jim is survived by his wife of 53 years, Carolyn, daughter, Tracy Manning Brown (Eddie), brother-in-law, Rodney Appling and grandchildren Clay Caffey, Lauren Fredericksen, Reed Boroughs and Haley Raschke, one great grandchild, Taytum, and numerous cousins and great friends. The family would like to thank Drs. B.K. Singh, Shane Kimball and Kamal Patel who patiently directed us through the last 4 years. A memorial service will be held Tuesday, October 29 at 11 a.m. at St. James United Methodist Church, 321 Pleasant Valley Drive, in Little Rock with a reception immediately following. In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that donations be made to The Lamar Porter Revitalization, c/o The Little Rock Boys Club, P.O. Box 530, North Little Rock, Ark. 72115 or to your favorite sports organization. The service arrangements are entrusted to Ruebel Funeral Home, please sign the online condolence book at

Published October 25, 2019

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