Harry Wesley Wright


Dr. Harry Wesley Wright passed from this life on July 7, 2019 in his home in Norman, Oklahoma.
He was born in Providence, Rhode Island, on October 28, 1931, to Harry Wesley Wright Sr. and Helen Philomena (Brooks) Wright.
Harry graduated from high school in Arlington, Virginia. After high school, he earned his Bachelor's Degree from The College of Wooster in 1954 and his Master's Degree in Theology from McCormick Theological Seminary in 1958.
Harry spent 6 years in Detroit with the Presbyterian Church. He then went on to earn his Bachelor's in Counseling from Eastern Michigan University in 1970.
At the age of 45, Harry went to Michigan State University and earned his Doctorate in Psychology - a feat which took him 12 years.
In his professional career, Harry was very influential in the Civil Rights Movement in the Michigan area. While working in the Civil Rights Department in Michigan, Harry helped write Civil Rights legislation. He also had his own counseling practice. Harry taught in the Psychology Department of Saginaw Valley State University and at Northwestern University. In 2006, Harry and his wife Donna moved to Norman, Oklahoma, and he taught at The University of Oklahoma for 11 years. Harry was a teacher who loved to share his knowledge, and his students loved him.
Harry was a rabid University of Michigan fan, and he loved their football, basketball, and softball teams. He also enjoyed traveling, and he and Donna took many trips, including one to visit his brother who lived in Alaska. Harry was an avid cyclist and was a lifetime member of the League of Michigan Cyclists. He was a voracious reader.
In his personal life, Harry continued to champion civil rights, as well as human rights. He was active in many organizations, including the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), the Center for Children and Families (PCFI), and the Dogs of Lexington (the Oklahoma prison dog training program). He received a citation from the city of Norman for his service as a member of the Human Rights Commission. Harry was also active in the Presbyterian church, holding leadership positions in the Presbytery.
He was a kind, easy-going, intellectual man, and just an all-around good guy.
Harry is preceded in death by his parents, his brother Gordon Wright, his daughter Tracy Garland, an infant daughter Linda, and his premature twin sons.
Left to cherish his memory are his wife of nearly 17 years, Donna (Waterous) Wright, his son Steven Lewis, grandson Justin Lewis, step-daughter Heidi and husband Bill Etchieson, granddaughter Sydney Etchieson, step-son Fred and wife Shannon Vint, and grandsons Parker and Preston Vint.
A memorial service for Harry will be held at Memorial Presbyterian Church, 601 24th Street, Norman, Oklahoma, on July 18 at 1 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Memorial Presbyterian Church or Friends for Folks.
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Published on July 15, 2019
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3 posts

Andrew White
Aug 13, 2019
A memorial tree was planted in memory of Harry Wesley Wright.  Plant a tree
Andrew White
Aug 13, 2019
I had the privilege of being Dr. Wright’s student at OU. He was a great mentor and a friend. I took his Abnormal Psychology class, and I was just in awe of his knowledge and experience. I was able to be his Teaching Assistant for two of his courses, and I learned so much from him. When I was lost and didn’t know where to turn in my pursuit of education for a Counseling Degree, he always was a supportive and safe person to go to. He wrote me countless recommendations and believed in me as a young professional.

When I graduated, he told me to call him Harry, since I was a fellow colleague in his eyes. While I always felt he deserved the full extent of his title, I figure what better way
...to say goodbye than call him by his name. Thanks for all the support and guidance, Harry. You definitely left a mark on countless lives, especially mine.Read more
The Clubbs
Jul 17, 2019
Harry was a great neighbor and gave us a lot of joy over the past 10 years. He and Donna provided friendship, fun, and guidance when we would sit outside to enjoy our beautiful homes. Harry's love for Michigan sports was always fun and we found ourselves watching them as he always flew the Michigan flag with pride! We truly enjoyed the time Harry's friendship provided. Rest in peace Harry.

Love Mike, Terrie & Susan (Taylor)