W5QDW - April 24, 2011

W5QDW - William J. 'Jess' Wright William J. 'Jess' Wright
Albuquerque, NM
QCWA # 31672

WRIGHT -- Jesse D. Wright Jr, (Jess), 85 of Albuquerque passed away April 24, 2011 at UNM Medical Center in Albuquerque after a short illness. Jess was born February 6, 1926 in Nettleton, Missouri and had been a resident of Albuquerque for over 60 years. Jess graduated from Hamilton High School in Hamilton, Missouri in 1944 and enlisted in the US Army Air Forces as an Aviation Cadet.

At the end of World War II he was awaiting flight training and was discharged due to the end of hostilities. On his return to Missouri, Jess attended the Central Radio School in Kansas City and operated the Hamilton Radio shop until late 1948. During this time he attended Emery flying school and learned to fly. Jess was employed by Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, Shreveport, Louisiana and Oxnard, California from 1948 until his retirement in 1981.

He was married to Lucia Faye Lewis in 1953 and divorced in 1960. He never remarried, but was a devoted single father.

Jess was an avid Amateur Radio Operator, call sign W5QDW and member of numerous radio clubs and organizations.

Aviation was a central part of Jess' life, and he earned Commercial and Instrument flight ratings while owning and operating several light aircraft. He also built and flew radio controlled model aircraft and was one of the founding members of the Albuquerque Radio Control Club and a member of the One Eighth Air Force (OEAF). Jess was a Life Colonel in the Commemorative Air Force, Lobo Wing.

After retirement Jess took up motorcycling and was an active member of the Gold Wing Road Riders Association and The RETREADS Motorcycle Club. Jess is survived by his son Randall L. Wright of Newport, Maine; his son's wife, Betty; his granddaughters, Catherine L. Wright of Bangor, Maine and Christine L. Wright of Newport, Maine; his sister, Ruby Nicholson of Liberty, Missouri; many nieces and nephews; and many good friends. He was predeceased by his parents, Jesse and Mamie Wright; his adopted son, Steven Charles Sullivan; his sisters Effie Mae, Mildred, Luana, Mary Jo, Helen, Ellen, and Margie; and his brother Johnny.

Cremation has taken place and no local services are planned. Burial will take place at Highland Cemetery in Hamilton at a future date. Contributions may be made in Jess's memory to the AT-11 restoration fund, Lobo Wing (CAF) PO Box 20576, Albuquerque, NM 87154-0576. ttp://www.lobowing.org. Keep 'Em Flying, W5QDW, QRT.

Regarding the passing of Jess, W5QDW, I am greatly saddened by this news. I knew and worked with Jess at Sandia National Labs for a number of years and Jess and I made a number of business trips together. Jess was a member of QCWA Chapter 94 and will be greatly missed.

Chuck Stanton, W5LBU, Sec/Treas Ch. 94