At 93-years-old, D.M. “Shorty” Wright passed away on Tuesday, June 25 leaving behind family, friends and a mourning community.
While Wright wore many hats through the years, he served as Benton County Property Assessor from 1968 until he retired in 1980. He was also a WWII Veteran of the Pacific Theatre and owned a local grocery store.
Current Benton County Property Assessor Ryan Hall said, “I considered Shorty a good friend and a wealth of knowledge about the history and people of our county. I sought out his support and advice early on in my campaign to become property assessor. After being elected, Shorty called and checked on me quite often.”
Hall recalled, “The funniest story was when he called and asked me to tell him about the new Dollar Store coming in up around the interstate. I told him I hadn’t heard about a new store. He told me ‘you know good and well the Assessor knows about it,’ so I went over and asked the county mayor at the time, Barry Barnett about it. His response was he hadn’t heard about one coming either. Of course, you see what’s up there now and Shorty knew before the Benton County Assessor and county mayor.”
Hall said, “His mind was sharp right up till the end. He will be greatly missed. Continued prayers for his family.”
Locals remember Wright sitting across from Camden Elementary School in his rocking chairs greeting students and passer-byers frequently. A rocking chair sat empty with a wreath in memory of the beloved Wright in front of the same house on Washington Ave. The home is now owned by Bob Smith.
Wright left behind his wife, Anita Wright, son, Terry Wright, daughter, Lisa Flowers, sister, Janice Wiseman, several grandchildren and one great grandchild. See obituary on page 5A.