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Date of Passing: May 24, 2004

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DEANNA PAULINE WRIGHT (nee JOHNSON) With heavy hearts, the family of Deanna (Johnson) Wright announces her death Monday, May 24, 2004, after a brief illness. She died peacefully in her sleep at a hospital in Buffalo, New York, with her family close at hand. She is survived by her husband John, her children Carolyn (Darr) LaFon and David, and her grandson John Walter LaFon. Her late father Paul Johnson and her beloved mother Murdina taught her the value of family. Her little brother Don and his wife Myra (Ottawa), as well as her big sister Marilyn and her husband Thom Murray (Winnipeg), remember her easy laugh and her sense of fun. To the four Murray children - Karen, Rod, Alana, and Diane - she was a favourite aunt. Deanna is also remembered by Dorothy Johnson, the wife of her late brother Roderick, and their children Laura and Steven. Rod passed away this past fall, shortly after Lauras wedding. Rods death was, for Deanna, a source of great sorrow. Deanna was born in Fort William (now Thunder Bay), ON. She spent much of her childhood in Saskatoon, but her family settled in Winnipeg in 1951. She attended Norwood Collegiate Institute (now Nelson McIntyre), where she excelled in athletics - basketball, volleyball, tennis and skating. As a figure skater, she had grace. As a speed skater, she was swift. She won Canadian and provincial championships. She was also skilled at twirling a baton, and was one of the original Winnipeg Blue Bomberettes. But tennis was, by far, her favourite sport. She played until the last weeks of her life. Deanna trained as a nurse at Winnipeg General Hospital, where she met the love of her life, a young doctor John R. Wright. They married in 1960 at Trinity Baptist Church and have been together ever since. They moved to Baltimore and later to Buffalo, New York, where they have lived for 30 years in the same house. Deanna was an extremely proud mother. In every conversation, she found an opportunity to relate some news of David, Carolyn, and more recently John Walter. No milestone was too small to share, no achievement too trivial to trumpet. By her own estimation, her children were her greatest accomplishment. Carolyn is now an attorney and mother in Shalimar, Florida, where she lives with her husband Col. (Dr.) E. Darr LaFon, USAF, and 18 month old John Walter. David is a correspondent for ABC News based in London, England. If motherhood was her lifes work, friendship was her hobby. She found friends wherever she went. She loved making people laugh. And she loved to laugh herself. The family held a memorial service Thursday, May 27, at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Buffalo. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to one of Deannas favourite charities: the Roswell Park Alliance Foundation or the American Cancer Society.

As published in the Winnipeg Free Press on May 29, 2004

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