Wilson George Wright III St. George, UT - Wilson George Wright III, Commander U.S. Navy (Retired) passed away on November 2, 2011 at his home in St. George, Utah . He was 95 years old.
He was born in Ogden, Utah on May 15, 1916 to Wilson G. and Lelia D. Wright. He graduated from Ogden High School, and attended Weber College for one year and then entered the U.S. Naval Academy in June of 1935 graduating with the class of 1939. Following graduation from the Naval Academy, Wilson served one year on the Battleship USS Idaho and one year on the Destroyer Lamson, then reported to Pensacola, Florida for Flight Training and was designated a Naval Aviator on December 16, 1941. His first aviation duty was in Fighter Squadron 71 aboard the Wasp participating in the landings on Guadalcanal and was aboard when the Wasp was torpedoed and sunk.
Then came a lengthy combat tour of duty as Executive Officer of Fighter Squadron 33 which was land based in the Solomon Islands, flying many combat missions including fighter sweeps and bomber escort missions over Rabaul. For this service he was awarded five Air Medals and the Distinguished Flying Cross. Following six months as a Fighter Type Instructor at the Naval Air Station, Atlantic City, he was ordered to the Naval Air Station Grosse Ile, Michigan to start and commission Air Group 97 and served in that unit as the Commanding Officer of Fighter Bomber Squadron 97. He was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal for his service in Air Group 97. Upon decommissioning of Air Group 97, the next assignment was Commanding Officer of Fighter Squadron 153 then Commanding Officer of the Flag Administrative Unit and staff Personnel officer of the staff of Commander Fleet Air Alameda.
Continuing assignments were Executive Officer of the Combat Information Center School, Commanding Officer of Fleet Aircraft Service Squadron 9, Operations Officer in the Aircraft Carrier USS Wright, Executive Officer Naval Air Station Moffett Field and Chief Staff Officer Utility Wing Pacific Fleet. After retirement from the Navy, Wilson worked as an Engineer and Supervisor in the Aerospace Industry. Three years with the Lockheed Missile Division on the Polaris Missile project and seventeen years with Rockwell Space Division involved with the Moon Landing and the Space Shuttle programs.
During his retirement years, he and his wife traveled extensively and he enjoyed home projects and working with his computer. He and his wife, Doris served a "Couple Mission" in the Philippines for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Wilson married his first wife, Betty Jean McGee on July 19, 1946. She passed away in November of 1960. He married his second wife, Doris Leinbach Rothermel (Sattezahn) on November 4, 1961. This marriage was solemnized in the Los Angeles Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on March 20, 1971. Doris passed away on December 18, 2002.
Wilson is survived by seven children, twenty-three grandchildren and 21 great-grandchildren. The surviving children are: Pamela Alfieri of Garden Grove, CA, Candice Steelman of San Tan Valley, AZ, W. George Wright of Buckeye, AZ, Robin Wilson of Provo, UT, Peter Wright of St. George, UT, Bambi Shinoda of Santa Ana, CA and Michele Morales of St. George, UT.
He was preceded in death by first wife Betty and second wife Doris, one daughter, Cynthia Selby and 3 granddaughters.
Funeral services will be held on Saturday, November 5, 2011, at 11:00 a.m. at the Bloomington LDS 7th Ward Chapel, 3381 S. Mulberry Dr., St. George, UT. Visitations will be held on Friday, November 4, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Metcalf Mortuary, 288 West St. George Blvd., and on Saturday, from 10:00 to 10:45 a.m. prior to services at the chapel.
Interment will be in the St. George City Cemetery. Arrangements entrusted to the care of Metcalf Mortuary, (435) 673-4221. Please visit our website at www.metcalfmortuary.com for condolences, complete obituary and funeral listings.
Sponsored by Ancestry