Raymond L Wright Profile Photo
1953 Raymond 2023

Raymond L Wright

November 23, 1953 — October 26, 2023



Raymond "Ray" Leslie Wright 69 passed away Wednesday October 26th, 2023 peacefully at home.  He now rests with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ after a long courageous battle with pancreatic cancer.

Born November 23rd, 1953, to Esther Wright in Greeley, Colorado.  Crawford became Ray’s hometown as a toddler.   Ray was a resourceful kid and started his mechanical career very young.   He and his brother built a go-kart with materials they could scrounge up.  Their fun was short as the Crawford police believed dismantling the kart would be best.  At age 11 his skills were used to fix his mother’s car, which he gladly did until she ceased driving a few years ago.  Throughout his youth he worked many odd jobs including Anderson's dealership and the CO-OP service station in Crawford.  Ray was well known for his mix of muscle cars and motorcycles. Ray was sometimes notorious with the town police.  Excessive usage of horsepower was a vice hard for Ray to control.  After high school he and his brother Bob worked in construction at Missouri Valley Construction.  There they worked with crews building I-80.  During this time, he dated and then married the love of his life Cheryl Beman in 1977.  In 1978 Ray began his railroad career as a Machinist Apprentice for Burlington Northern.  After numerous positions and promotions, he retired as a supervisor in 2010.

During their 45 years of marriage Ray and Cheryl had 3 wonderful children, Danea, Scott, and Melissa.  Ray spent time coaching and was an avid supporter of his children's sports. 

Ray was a lifelong member of Bethlehem Lutheran Church.  He served many positions within the church where he was able to share his strong faith.  Ray was never shy about spreading God's good word and always said "God Bless" when saying goodbye.

Ray was a selfless man.  He woke each morning with a drive to help others.  Ray's willingness to help anyone in need was unparalleled.  Countless people received his loving help for whatever his two hands and huge heart could give.  Paying it forward was in his DNA.  It shall live on forever through those he instilled this passion.

Ray's love of speed and all things mechanical stayed with him throughout life.  Ray built many race engines and worked on race cars with his lifelong friends.  Together they attended national events, held records and won races.  The Wright garage often rumbled with thunder.  Ray’s engines would rattle dishes in his neighbor’s cabinets.  Famous for his small block Chevy engines, they would breathe unmuffled fire.  “Buzzing” to redline the noise would attract a crowd of neighbors young and old.  Ray’s shop was a social gathering of motorheads, neighbors and family.  There he would spread his wisdom on mechanics and God. 

As his children grew and married his grandkids became a favorite part of life.  Ray's grandkids loved his '69 Camaro as much as he did.  The grandsons took to his love of speed machines.  The granddaughters softened his rough hands with their hearts.  They will grow up and carry his torch, becoming people’s “Ray” of light - offering a helping hand to one in need.

He is survived by his wife Cheryl of Hemingford, daughter Danea (Corey) Crowder of Beulah Wyoming, son Scott (Alicia) Wright of New Underwood South Dakota, daughter Melissa (Roy) Bierman of Arnold Nebraska, grandchildren Tristin and Corbin Crowder, Jordan and Hailey Wright, Brook Walter Emma and Ava Bierman. 

Also surviving him is his mother Esther Wright, sister Helen (Bob) Arnold, brother Bob (Alta) Wright, sister Kathy (Roger) McCoy, many wonderful nieces and nephews, cousins, and friends.

Proceeded in death by his in-laws Jerry and Dorothy Beman, and sister-in-law Vicky Dunn.

His celebration of life will be Saturday November 4th at the Community Building in Crawford Nebraska – 2:00 PM. A memorial has been established for the Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Crawford, NE.  Donations may be sent to Chamberlain Chapel, PO Box 970, Chadron, NE 69337

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

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, November 4, 2023

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Mountain time)

Crawford Community Building

1st St, Crawford, NE 69339

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