She then attended and graduated from Arizona State University with a B.S. and M. Ed. in Physical Education. While still a student, she was an assistant for Nina Murphy, Head of Women’s Physical Education. She was active in many sports, but particularly dance, archery and badminton.
Upon graduation she began her teaching career at Tempe High School in 1961. She continued teaching there until 1983 when she moved to Lee Station Ranch. She taught physical education at Douglas High School from 1983-l990, when she retired.
Much of Carla’s childhood was spent riding horses. Because of her abilities and fondness of horses, she was chosen as the horseback riding instructor for girls at Camp Mary White Girl Scout camp in New Mexico through her high school and college years.
Carla was also very proficient at wood carving, jewelry making, art work on gourds and Kachina carving. She relished every kind of challenge presented by the convergence of problems to be solved with materials and tools-at-hand. She contributed to the Methodist Church and Douglas Cowbelles craft sales from 1983 until the present. Many in the local community are fortunate to own some of her craftwork. Carla enjoyed helping others and teaching others her crafts. She was very active in the Cowbelle organization, holding several offices. Her profound sense of community shone through with the countless acts of love and care she performed without thought of pay or expectation of reciprocity. Carla worked with Carol teaching science and environmental lessons throughout Cochise County with the Nimon Hopkins Environmental Education Center.
Carla exhibited an abiding curiosity for Science and Nature. In addition to her concern with the cattle, horses, dogs and cats on the ranch, Carla was fascinated with animals in general and with native species in particular. She and Carol made many collecting trips with a local naturalist, Scott McCleve and his wife Annie, searching for beetles on trips ranging from the southern borders of Arizona and New Mexico to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. On one 4-day backpacking trip the group surmounted the roadless Rincon Mountains, succeeded in collecting a new species of Scarab beetle. On the way out Carla sat down and told Scott she couldn't go on. Scott said, 'Look Carla, that's bear scat right beside you!' She got up with renewed determination and they finally got down the mountain, and survived to tell about it.
Carla also enjoyed gardening, fishing and camping. With her quick mind, she was good at bridge and canasta, and played cribbage weekly with a group of friends for years. She helped good friends Kyle and Bill Fitzgibbon on many development projects at their mountain ranch. Carla was a loyal friend, trustworthy and generous in so many ways.
She was preceded in death by her parents and her good friend Carol Hopkins. She leaves behind many friends, cousins, and her adopted family Chuck and Patty Chambers.
At her request, there will be no funeral or formal memorial service. During her short time at TMC and Hospice, Carla was visited by many of her friends from all over Arizona and Texas -- childhood friends, ASU friends, Tempe High friends, and her many former students and colleagues in Douglas. These visits turned into small memorials themselves as visitors shared wonderful memories of Carla. In the fall there will be an informal memorial service to scatter her ashes at the ranch.
To perpetuate the memory of Carla and Carol, a memorial scholarship for high school students pursuing a degree in education has been set up through the Cochise College Foundation in the names of Carla McManus and Carol Hopkins. Send any contributions to: Cochise College Foundation 4190 W. Hwy 80 Douglas, AZ 85607.
Brown Page Mortuary is in charge of arrangements, 364-3434.