Manning/Sisson Memorial Fund awards first grants in support of Bristol, Plainville swim programs

Published on Wednesday, 27 October 2021 12:50


BRISTOL – The recently established Manning/Sisson Memorial Fund at the Main Street Community Foundation has awarded its first grants in support of Bristol and Plainville swim programs.

Samantha Rajotte, scholarship and program officer with the Main Street Community Foundation, said that the Plainville and Bristol recreation swim teams each received $500 from the fund.

The Fund was recently established at Main Street Community Foundation in memory of former residents Dennis and Anna May Manning, and their daughter Mary Sisson. The donor advised fund will continue to benefit the sport of swimming in Bristol and Plainville.

"Swimming was instrumental to the Manning and Sisson families of Bristol and Plainville," said Rajotte. "So, when they decided to establish a fund at Main Street Community Foundation to honor the memory of Mary M. Sisson along with her parents, Dennis and Anna May Manning, they knew what the purpose would be."

The Manning/Sisson Memorial Fund was established this year as a donor advised fund, allowing for grants to be made at the recommendation of the donors. The families have stated that grants will be awarded to organizations with preference for programs that foster the sport of swimming through team competition and skill-building. Preference will be given to programs at the municipal recreational level for the City of Bristol or the Town of Plainville, and/or collegiate level swim team programs.

“We are so proud to support these programs,” said Clare White, Dennis and Anna May’s daughter.

Rajotte said Dennis and Anna May Manning raised their seven children in Bristol. They were involved in all of the sports each child played, especially the sport of swimming.

"They often participated as timekeepers at swim meets, coordinated award banquets and lent a hand wherever help was needed," she said. "Additionally, Anna May served as a middle school swim team coach in Bristol."

Mary, Rajotte said, was the oldest of the seven Manning siblings and an accomplished swimmer. She worked as a lifeguard at the Marriott in Farmington and the Dennis Malone Aquatic Center in Bristol. She also served as a swim team coach for the recreational team in Plainville.

"She was often seen performing her expert duties as a Connecticut Swim Team Official at high school swim meets," said Rajotte.

Don Sisson, Mary's husband, said he is looking forward to making a positive impact through the fund.

“We hope to foster compassion, kindness and build the character of young individuals through the sport of swimming in the same manner it fulfilled their lives,” said Sisson.

For more information on Main Street Community Foundation, call 860-583-6363 or email

Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or

Posted in The Bristol Press, Bristol, Plainville on Wednesday, 27 October 2021 12:50. Updated: Wednesday, 27 October 2021 12:52.