Services to honor and celebrate the life of Donna Wright will be 9:00 am Tuesday, July 16, 2019 at RiverCrest Chapel. The family will receive friends from 6-8:00 pm Monday also at RiverCrest Chapel.
Born January 7, 1934 in Clayton, New Mexico, Donna was welcomed by her mother, Ethelbert Hogue. A beautiful baby, one of Donna's studio photographs was submitted in a contest and was selected the winner. The prize, she would then be seen on billboards around the Los Angeles, California area. In addition, Donna's mother was presented with a contract for Donna to appear in a movie. Her mother declined, but as it turned out - God had bigger plans for Donna as she would become the matriarch of a faith-filled family living out the role of a beautiful wife, mother, Grandmother and more.
In her early years, Donna enjoyed spending time with her grandparents on their Eugene, Oregon ranch. This couple was instrumental in helping to raise her. She would also spend impressionable time with an Italian woman who began teaching Donna her way around the kitchen. This was when Donna would begin perfecting the process of making the homemade spaghetti sauce that Donna's family grew to love.
As a young woman, Donna, like so many others during that time enjoyed dancing. She was also fond of the idea of dancing with a man in uniform. As it turned out, she would meet a sailor named, James Wright at one of those dances. The facts are that Donna was really there to pay attention to another man in the Navy. It didn't help that James wasn't that great of a dancer either! Again, God had a bigger plan when Donna and James ended up in the same carpool to catch a ride home. The two began talking and by the end of the night, Donna had given James her number. There was a problem, however, when Donna got one of the numbers wrong. Luckily, after failed attempts to reach her, James found someone who knew Donna and her real phone number. His perseverance paid off and, after a short engagement, the two married. Donna would remain stateside awaiting James' assignment with the U.S. Navy to come to an end.
It would be during a period of leave that Donna and James would make a trip to Indiana to visit James' parents. While there, the two attended a revival where they both knew God was tugging at their hearts to receive salvation. Donna was primed and ready, but James didn't know how he could be a Christian and a sailor. Regardless, the call was too strong to be ignored and was answered by both. That was the beginning of a new life for the Wright's.
Upon James' honorable discharge, the couple moved to Waxahachie, Texas where he attended Bible school. This is when Donna began her career as a Pastor's wife. Next, they would move their family to Northern Indiana where Donna would not only continue her work alongside James, but nearly perfect the role of homemaker and mom!
Part of her accomplishments were certainly carried out in the kitchen as Donna continued making that famous spaghetti. Other favorites on her menu were her homemade hot rolls and apple slices - a treat with just the right amount of flaky crust and apple filling to leave your mouth watering. In addition, she kept a meticulous home and always made sure that her children had everything necessary to live happy and stable lives.
In 1967, the Wright's would make Bixby, Oklahoma their home. It was here that Donna fine-tuned one of her long-time passions - singing. This, when she found a steady singing partner and friend in Lovell Hurst. The two would have various others to complete their trio through the years but could always count on one another. Just a few days ago, Lovell gave Donna permission to sing with someone else once she made it to Heaven; however, she definitely wanted Donna to know that once she made it, it was back to the two of them together again.
While in Bixby, Donna found employment at an insurance agency, Doc's Country Mart, and Citizen's Security Bank. When she wasn't working, pastimes that brought Donna joy included: knitting, crocheting, and spending time with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. There were many times at Grandma Wright's where she filled the days with activities, great food, and much love for her grands. There is no doubt that she left her imprint on each of their hearts and maybe even helped to launch a cook or two out of her kitchen.
Holidays were always special at the Wright household where Donna would make everyone feel welcomed and loved. Her homemade gifts, whether knitted or kneaded, were always anticipated and welcomed, but it was the joy and gift of her time and attentiveness that can never be duplicated.
Donna never thought of herself as a strong individual or one to be emulated, however, her family challenges that thought. Despite the adversities that she faced in this world, she fought back as gracefully as possible. She was truly a woman who set an example that should be followed.
A woman who has been described as: pleasant, sweet, particular, organized, persistent, loving, caring, and compassionate, Donna wanted to and tried to please everyone. Her children will tell you, by no means did this make her a push over. She expected the best out of her family and was a woman of grace, beauty, and, faith that we all thought would keep on going - like the Energizer bunny that her neighbors at Autumn Park grew to love.
Following a graceful battle with her third round of cancer, Donna went home to be with the Lord on Saturday, July 13, 2019. She was 85. She went to join: her mother, Ethelbert; husband, Rev. James Wright; sister, Charlene Eisele and infant daughter, Kathleen.
She leaves to cherish her memory a host of family and friends. They include: her children: daughter, Brenda Burnside and husband, Jerry of McAlester; daughter, Alane Wright of Broken Arrow; son, Jim Wright and wife, Anita of Bixby; son, Rev. Roger Wright and wife, Tammy of Waupaca, WI; grandchildren: Renee Gabbard (Trent), Jason Burnside (Kendra), Joshua Wright (Stephanie), Emily Wright, Isaac Wright, Asher Wright, Shae Wright; great-grandchildren: Kelsey and Tyler Gabbard, Collin and Kennedy Wright, Aubree, Brielle, Aislyn and Zaylie Burnside. She is also survived by a sister, Jeaneil Bass along with a host of other relatives and friends.
Memorial donations may be made to the Hospice of Green Country, c/o Bixby Funeral Service.
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