September 5, 1927 - May 5, 2016
Her adventure began on Sept. 5, 1927 in Birmingham, Alabama. The daughter of Major Terrell Hays of Warrior, Alabama and Cora Marie Moore Pope Hays of James Station, Georgia, she was dressed like her Shirley Temple doll, but stories are still told by her cousins of how she was always catching her curls and ruffles by climbing trees. She met her future husband, Richard Troy Wright, born May 14, 1925 in Birmingham, Alabama, at North Birmingham Elementary School. He always remembered the first time he saw her, making mud pies. At the start of World War II, Richard joined the Navy and was sent to Northwestern University in Illinois to train as a pharmacist mate. On leave, he took Marie to the Vulcan Statue in Birmingham to propose. She didn’t accept. Each day for the next three days, he proposed again. On the third day, she accepted and they eloped on a street car to Bessemer, Alabama to be married. Then they each went home to their parents. To their surprise, he suddenly received orders to report to San Diego, CA and was shipped out to Australia and Manus Island in the Pacific for the rest of the war. She graduated from Birmingham High School in the meantime. On his return after the war, they moved to Tuscaloosa, Alabama to attend The University of Alabama. They decided to move to Texas and hitchhiked their way to Houston to the home of family, Albert and Bertha McFerrin McAllister. Richard began work as a Chemist and Quality Control Engineer at Sheffield Steel, later Armco. Marie worked at the Dickinson Gun Plant and at Southwestern Bell in Houston, Texas. Their first car was a used Model T Ford. After the birth of their first child, Ella Marie, they built their house on East Houston Street in Highlands, TX with the help of friends. While in Highlands, their sons Troy Richard and Robert Terrell were born. Missing the mountains, they had a second honeymoon at Mount Magazine in Arkansas. As city folk, Richard and Marie decided that they wanted their children to grow up in the country, so they found a farm in 1963 in an area they really liked on Gum Gully Road in Crosby, Texas. Their third son, Christopher Allen, was born after the move to Crosby. Marie worked for the US Postal Service in Highlands, Crosby and Huffman, Texas for 9 years. She also worked for Century 21 in Crosby and earned her Real Estate and Broker Licenses. Marie, a Baptist, and Richard, a Methodist, found their church home and enjoyed the wonderful fellowship of Our Shepherd Lutheran Church in Crosby. When Richard retired, they continued to travel the country in their RV. They joined Escapees, SKPs, based in Livingston, TX and enjoyed trips from the East Coast to the West Coast with Mexico and Canada included. They stayed as Park Rangers in New Mexico for a few years. They always enjoyed meeting their sons on the Fourth of July in Telluride, Colorado. They visited Colombia, South America twice. They also visited with her sister Betsy Stockham Simpson of Tucson, Arizona and half-brother James Leonard of Modesto, California and kept in touch with cousins Mildred McWilliams Woods of Fultondale, AL and Fred Campbell and his sister Carolyn Campbell Higley of Gardendale, AL. After Richard passed in July, 1991, Marie decided that she would continue travelling. The first place this barely 5’ tall, very independent, new widow took out the rig, a huge truck and 40 foot trailer, was to their favorite mountain top in Colorado. She loved telling the story to her children that the way up was full of joy, but when she had to come down, she became very afraid. She thought about asking for help or stopping on the winding road until it occurred to her that she didn’t have to drive the whole road down, just the next few feet. She took it a few feet, then the next few feet at a time until she reached her goal. Marie enjoyed spending part of the year in Why, Arizona and she joined a travel group, Loners of America. She was interviewed by US News & World Report, Sept. 11, 2000 for an article on how widows are making the golden years better for everyone. She took each grandchild on a trip with her. She enjoyed reading, music, genealogy, needlework, and had a wonderful sense of fun, dressing up on Halloween to surprise her grandchildren by trick or treating at their doors. Marie always kept her passport and her motorcycle license current. She never met a stranger. Marie passed away in her sleep at the age of 88 on May 5, 2016 in Kaufman, Texas, where her son Robert and his wife Faith Wright live. She is survived by her daughter Ella Wright Guaqueta of Crosby, TX and her children: Lisa Guaqueta and her husband Travis Lane of Pearland, TX; Audrey Guaqueta and husband Santiago Laverde and their children Amalia and Benjamin Laverde of Humble, TX; and by Richard Camilo Guaqueta of Boston, MA. Marie is survived by son Troy Richard Wright and wife Trish Ezell Wright, of Greenville, MS and Cat Spring, TX and their children Thomas Wright of MS, Lori and husband Tom Borkowski and children Drew and Ryan Montgomery of Frisco, TX and son Keith Atkinson and daughter Siera of Santa Fe, TX. Marie is survived by her son Robert and his wife Faith Shinagawa Wright and children Marcus and Guadalupe Whipple and their children Briana, Jaylen and Alexis Wheeler and daughter Sophia Whipple of Phoenix, AZ and by Andrea Whipple and husband Jesse Fleming and their son Logan of Richmond, TX. She is survived by her son Christopher Wright and wife Lisa Campbell Wright of Richardson, TX and children Melissa Jeanne Gordon, Michael Thomas Wright of Richardson, TX and Jennifer Chen Wright of Tyler, TX. The graveside service will be conducted by Rev. Chester McCown, former pastor of Our Shepherd Lutheran Church in Crosby, at the Salem Lutheran Church in White Hall, Navasota, TX at 11:00am on Tuesday, May 10, 2016. She will rest beside her loving and much loved husband, Richard Troy Wright. One of her favorite psalms begins, “I will lift mine eyes unto the mountains…” In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in Marie Wright’s memory to the Salvation Army.
Her adventure began on Sept. 5, 1927 in Birmingham, Alabama. The daughter of Major Terrell Hays of Warrior, Alabama and Cora Marie Moore Pope Hays of James Station, Georgia, she was dressed like her Shirley Temple doll, but stories are still... View Obituary & Service Information
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