Cover photo for John W. Wright, Jr.'s Obituary
John W. Wright, Jr. Profile Photo
1949 John 2020

John W. Wright, Jr.

June 19, 1949 — February 8, 2020

John W. "BJ" Wright, Jr. 70 was called home by his maker Sunday February 23, 2020 in St. Vincent Healthcare in Billings, MT surrounded by family. BJ was born in Casa Grande, AZ on June 19, 1949 the first born to John William and Alice Darlene (Monday) Wright. He grew up in Arizona, California, and primarily in Texas.

He joined the Army as soon as he could and was an American Patriot to the core. He had three girls who he loved and adored, with a previous marriage. Summer of 1973 fate brought him to Montana where he joined Inland Empire Shows and became lifelong friends with the owner. On July 23, 1973, he met the love of his life, his soul mate Mary Heckford. When he recalled their story the glimmer in his eye told it all without words. She became his world and he became hers. They continued to call Inland Empire their home until Mary expected their second child. This began the tough decision - Texas or Montana? Back and forth a few times, they chose Lewistown, Montana to call their forever home and raise their children.

BJ transitioned into the National Guard and served proudly. He was stationed through the Lewistown Armory, but was called to be an NBC/NCO training officer in Fort Harrison during the Gulf War. When the dust settled, he came back to work for the City of Lewistown and at the time of his retirement he was the senior operator at the Waste Water Treatment Plant. He later took on a hobby job at his best friends' local pub, The Glacier. He was the kindest man you would ever meet. He made everyone feel like family. He truly never met a stranger and he loved hard with his whole being. He loved his wife more than anything or anyone and then his children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and then his friends, who became family.

He is survived by his loving wife of 47 years, Mary of Lewistown; his children Jennifer Collins and Martha Wright both of Amarillo, TX, Mary D. Wright, Angela (Matt) Wright and Lori Jo Wright all of Lewistown, MT, John III (Sally) of Malta, MT and Shaun (Effie) of Lewistown, MT; brother Kenneth (Jaton) of Spade, TX; sister Arlene Denise Ranck of Dripping Springs, TX; his 19 grandchildren (30+ if you count extended); his 9 great grandchildren.

He is preceded in death by his parents, brother Frank, his brother-in-law Rusty, his grandson William Shane, and his great grandson Andru.

Memorial Services for John W. "BJ" Wright will be Saturday, March 14th, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. in the Cloyd Chapel, cremation has taken place.

Friends are asked to make memorials to DCI (Dialysis Clinic Inc.), the Kidney Foundation or the charity of their choice and they may be left with the Cloyd Funeral Home. Condolences for the family may be posted online at

His life left a mark of love and kindness on this world, and his passing leaves a legacy.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of John W. Wright, Jr., please visit our flower store.


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