NLJ Staff

Feb. 3, 1940–June 4, 2022

With great sadness, we announce the loss of our beloved husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend, Ernest Dean Wright, age 82. He entered the gates of Heaven, June 4, 2022, where he was welcomed by our Lord and Savior along with many family and friends. He passed away due to natural causes, peaceful and surrounded by his family in Socorro, N.M.

Memorial Service was celebrated at 11 a.m., Tuesday, June 14, at Vineyard Church of Albuquerque, located at 6300 San Mateo Blvd Ste. F1, Albuquerque, NM 87109, (505) 907-6705, with Chaplin John Ambrose officiating. Celebration of Life reception followed at 3303 Flat Iron Rd, Rio Rancho, New Mexico 87144.

Ernest Dean Wright was born on Feb. 3, 1940, to WJ Wright and Margie Preston in Cheyenne, Okla. He was raised in southeastern New Mexico. He traveled the world, dedicated his life to the membership campground sales industry. He put down roots in California, Wyoming, Colorado, and Florida. He returned to northern New Mexico in 2019. 

He will be greatly missed and lovingly remembered by his dear wife of 58-years, Diane Lynnette Wright, the love of his life, his children, Mitchell Dean Wright, Stefanie Lorraine Wright-Shirk, and loving grandchildren Hunter Garrett Wright and Keegan Burton Shirk, his life’s pride and joy. He is described by his family as an amazing father, an inspiration, and unconditionally loving person. He enjoyed golfing, playing poker, traveling, gold panning, outdoors, and socializing with his family and friends.  He was truly, a versatile and courageous entrepreneur, from membership campground sales, roofing, landscaping, to ranching — and even tried his hand in treatment foster care when he opened Covenant Child Foster Care.

Ernest is survived by his wife, Diane Lynnette Wright, of Socorro; his son, Mitchell Dean Wright (Teresa); his daughter, Stefanie Lorraine Wright-Shirk (Jimmy); grandchildren, Hunter Garrett Wright and Keegan Burton Shirk; sister, Gayle Jones (Curtis) of Blum, Texas; brothers David Wright (Adelina) of Socorro, Jack Wright (Nancy) of Sturgis, S.D., Derrell Wright of Roswell, N.M.; uncle, Johnny Christenot (Jane) of Pensacola, Fla.; and many family and friends he loved dearly. 

He was preceded in death by his parents, Preston and Margie Wright; and sisters, Joy McClain and Shirley Wright, both of Roswell. 

Honorary Gratitude: Blessed to be chosen are Larry Hill, Wanda Lawson, Damon Shirk, George Grey, Don Banks, Barry Clayton, Aubrey White, Larry Phillips Vivian and George Gray. He touched so many lives throughout the years both near and far beyond; he knew no strangers — there are too many to list, his presence and love was larger than life.

The family of Ernest Dean Wright wishes to extend sincere thanks to South Valley Care Center staff and Susan Bencal; Presbyterian Hospice staff.

Funeral Arrangements are by Daniels Family Funeral Services, 309 Garfield Ave., Socorro, NM 87801.

In lieu of flowers, Ernest D. Wright’s family would like for you to consider donations be made to: New Mexico Coalition to End Homelessness at, or Kids Golf Foundation at

Ernest Wright’s tribute was written in his honor by his family.


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