By LISA EASTMAN
Retirement doesn’t seem to be in the cards for Ken Manning.
The Manning’s originally purchased RHV at 305 N. Buckeye Avenue in 1994 and ran the store until 2008. Ken Manning came out of retirement to once again take over the daily operation of the downtown Abilene hardware store.
It’s a good thing,” Ken Manning said. “Just the opportunity for us both to rejoin the Abilene business community and rejoin our friends and the customers that we have built a relationship with through the years.”
The Manning’s originally arrived in Abilene after Ken was recruited by Duckwall’s.
“I started out as a stock boy, then assistant manager of a Duckwall store, and manager of a couple of Duckwall stores,” he said. “Then I was brought in as a buyer and a merchandiser.”
After he resigned from Duckwall, according to Ann, Ken made his first attempt to retire.
“Then she kicked me out of the house and said you’re too young and get busy,” Ken joked. “And she was right. Then this opportunity came along in the early 90’s.”
Ken Manning originally became involved with the store by helping out with his experience as a merchandiser.
Ann says of Ken, and the store, “He fell in love with it. He went in and he didn’t come out. So we decided that it was probably time to become partners and just buy it.”
”We really enjoy people and we love Abilene,” Ann Manning said. “We are all for small town business. We’re all for working together and the community.”