Tampa Palms community leader Dudley Bryant III mourned
TAMPA PALMS -
Dudley Bryant III, a former Tampa Palms community leader known for hosting successful fundraising events and an annual Kentucky Derby party, died last week after an illness. He was 74.
“He was a very robust and great guy who did a lot for the community,” said Patty Maney, a member of the Tampa Palms Community Development Council Board of Supervisors and close personal friend of Bryant.
Bryant was a founding member of Resource Tampa Palms, a community advocacy group instrumental in helping to strengthen the financial stability of the Tampa Palms Community Development District and Tampa Palms Owners Association.
“He was an inspiration for the (Tampa Palms) community,” Maney said.
Maney’s husband, Bud Maney, and Bryant were longtime friends, she said. They enjoyed participating in sporting clay, a form of clay pigeon shooting.
“His favorite place in the world was Skipper’s (Smokehouse),” Maney said of Bryant.
Maggie Wilson, a consultant to Tampa Palms Community Development District and active member of the homeowners association, described the men’s visit to the Skipper Road haunt as a “Friday ritual.”
Wilson called Bryant as “a true gentlemen, who was a good friend to all of Tampa Palms.”
“He was responsible for the financial policies and priorities that led to the current HOA facilities,” Wilson said. “He also introduced strict reserve policies.”
Bryant and his wife, Esther, who is ill, are also remembered for hosting lavish parties for charity events.
The Bryants, who respected community activities, opened their home to benefit and support public projects such as the New Tampa Regional Library and area service organizations.
Bill Edwards, president of the Tampa Palms Owners Association, said he will miss his friend’s cooking skills.
“He was an accomplished amateur cook who threw elaborate dinner parties,” Edwards said.
Bryant, a Kentucky native, was renowned for hosting an annual Kentucky Derby Day celebration in recognition of his blue grass roots.
Bryant is survived by his wife; a son, Dudley, who is called “Lee” by family and friends; a daughter, Beth; and four grandchildren.
A memorial service is planned for early June at Christ Our Redeemer Lutheran Church in Temple Terrace, Patty Maney said.
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