ELDER JOHN C. WRIGHT
John Cleveland Wright, Sr. was born November 6, 1935, to Charlie Hayes Wright and Margaret Camilla Wright in Hartshorne, Oklahoma. Little Johnny or John Cleveland as they would lovingly call him, was the youngest of eight children, five girls and three boys. His parents, all seven of his siblings, his wife and his two sons, John Wright, Jr. and Jason Wright, Sr. preceded him in death. At the tender age of six, after his mother and father died, John’s eldest sister Evie Wedlow, and her husband Ivan Wedlow, who were only seventeen years of age, grabbed the reigns of parenthood and cared for him and protected him and his two brothers, Carl Wright, who was twelve at the time and Homer Wright, who was ten years old. She mothered her brothers as if they were her very own children. He graduated from Phyllis Wheatley High School of Hartshorne, Oklahoma. Then, he went into the Army Reserve and eventually retired after 32 years of service. Later, he moved to Kansas City, Missouri and lived with his sisters Lilly Scruggs and Maxine Gordon, to find a job. John worked at Rainen Furniture Store for several years along with his hometown close friend Johnny Pete and a native Christian friend, Brother Calvert of Boone Tabernacle COGIC. Johnny Pete and John were a musical duo. Johnny would play his guitar and John would sing at different places on the weekends. However, one day Johnny Pete met a young lady who had several sisters. So, Johnny and his trusty sidekick John, mapped their way to 10th and Virginia, where John’s eyes fell on the oldest sister, Henrietta Herron. John found out Henrietta enjoyed music and most of all she could sure dance. There was shear romance in the air and John was bit by the “love bug”. He asked for her hand in marriage and the two became one (51 years, until her demise). John continued to work for Rainen Furniture Store. However, his friend Johnny Pete found another job, but his friend Brother Calvert, of Boone Tabernacle remained. John and Henrietta’s weekends were pretty much the same, singing and/or going to the dance hall. Something unusual happened that interrupted their weekend routine, Brother Calvert invited John to a revival held at Boone Tabernacle. John had heard about the “Holy Rollers” down through the years from his grandmother who was a member of a “sanctified” church, but he never attended. John accepted the invitation. That Friday night God started working on John while sitting in the pews listening to the message, “It’s Time to Make a Change”. God put a hook in John’s heart and begin to draw him. He was so charged from the night before that he chose to go the following night. He invited his wife, Henrietta, but she wanted to go dancing instead. John got dressed for church and Henrietta got dressed and went to the dance hall. God saved John on that one hot summer night in 1957. He couldn’t contain himself when he finally got home, he could not stop the “thank you Jesus and fill me Lord, fill me”. Sunday arrived and John decided Henrietta should attend the revival with him. They attended morning service and God poured out his spirit on the both. When they returned for night service, Henrietta got filled with the Holy Ghost and changed dance partners, while John cried, twirled, and did the windmill, until he came out of his buttoned-up jacket. Later, John was filled with the Holy Ghost and his new song was, “He gave me a touch and it’s wonderful.” Brother John Wright became one of the aspiring ministers of Boone Tabernacle, under the leadership of Elder Joseph Owens. Later, he became one of the assistant pastors under the leadership of Elder Floyd Henry Thuston. He was dedicated and supportive to his all and to Pastor Floyd Henry Thuston. He was the last Assistant Pastor and even chose to be Pastor Thuston’s caregiver until his passing. The same way Elder John and Missionary Henrietta Wright were dedicated to God’s service, they were determined their family members would know God and have the same determination, too. Henrietta and John went on a fast for her mother, Mother Mary Williams and all of Henrietta’s siblings to have a relationship with God. They were even concern about the spiritual well-being of their own children, John Jr., Margaret Camilla, Melinda, and Jason. In the wee hours of the night or early in the morning you would hear them praying and calling out names of love ones. They truly believed, “The effectual fervent prayers of a righteous man availeth much.” Sitting among us today are brothers, sisters, children, grandchildren, in-laws, nieces, nephews, cousins and even friends who are SAVED! However, Missionary Henrietta Wright, became stricken with Alzheimer’s disease and John quit his business, Wright’s General Hauling and Moving, and he became her sole caregiver until she transitioned. His business did not just serve as an income to provide for his family alone, but it was also an outreach ministry. Homeless men, drug addicts, and alcoholics men were employed by him, before there was a Labor Ready Workforce, and he led them to Christ. Many men were brought to his home to get haircuts, baths, clean clothes and a home cooked meal. Street ministry and outreach truly was his calling. We will miss his bubbly spirit and him playing the recorder, the harmonica, the piano, whistling, the singing, reciting poetry, playing checkers, horseshoe tossing or pulling out his microphone and having his grandchildren perform minstrel shows with a hat and cane. We will miss his kisses on our foreheads and that big smile. No longer will we have opportunity to dig into the change jar and get the fist-full of nickels, pennies, and dimes, or raid his snacks and sweet treats or eat ice cream, pound cakes, sweet potato pies (Grandma’s recipe), moon pies, and peanut butter sandwiches together or take a walk in the park. He was a faithful husband, the dad that every child could be proud of, and the grandfather (Paw Paw or Brown Brown) that every grandchild would dream of having. Elder John Cleveland Wright transitioned from earth to glory July 8, 2019. His wife Henrietta, and two sons, John and Jason preceded him in death. Leaving to morn and cherish the memories of John are: his two daughters, Margaret Camilla Portee and Melinda Elaine Madden, both of Kansas City, Missouri; his grandchildren: Amanda “Mandi” Barton(Kevin Barton), Danielle Banks, John“Kevin”Kelvin Ross, Jr., Margaret Camilla Marie Ross, Ricky Eugene Madden, Jr., Jonathan Rashon Madden, Joshua Alexander Madden, Jason Leon Wright, Jr., Erica Wright-Allen (D’Andre Allen); Great Grandchildren: Fabian Vaughn II, Jonathan Barton, Jahziel Barton, Daniel Banks, Jason Leon Wright III, Leanna Nicole Wright, Christian Barosa, Natalie Allen and a host of fabulous relatives. Funeral Services will be held at 11:00a.m. on Saturday, July 20, 2019 at Boone Tabernacle C.O.G.I.C. 1317 East 12th Street KCMO 64109. Visitation 9:00a.m. Interment 11:00a.m. on Monday, July 22, 2019 in Leavenworth National Cemetery.
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