King lived a long and wonderful life worthy of celebration. He was born on November 12, 1934, to Horace Holden Wright and Maybelle Leather Wright and raised in Mystic, Connecticut, and Buck Hill Falls, Pennsylvania. He graduated from Mercersburg Academy in 1952 and attended the University of Pennsylvania. He was a member of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity and rowed on the Penn varsity crew. His lightweight crew, undefeated in cup competition, captured the coveted Eastern Association of Rowing Colleges Sprint Championship. They competed at the Henley Regatta in 1955, rowing in a rare dead heat against the Royal Air Force in the semifinals of the Thames Challenge Cup. The win was not to be theirs, as they lost by inches in the row-over. After graduating from Penn in 1956, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and completed flight training in Pensacola, Florida. He served as an ensign from 1956-1958.
King was the consummate salesman and found his career passion in the world of institutional equities on Wall Street. His career took him from Morgan Stanley to Shearson Loeb Rhodes, ultimately retiring from Lehman Brothers in 2002. His charismatic personality lit up a room, and he is remembered by myriad clients and co-workers for his mentorship and leadership. His friendships meant the world to him.
He married Barbara Davidson Savage in 1970 and they shared 53 extraordinary years devoted to family, friends, and travel. They divided their time between Rye, New York, and southern Vermont, and later, Ponte Vedra Beach. His commitment and collaborative spirit in business also manifested itself in his devotion to Stratton Mountain. He took great pride in being a member of the Stratton Mountain Ski Patrol for over 50 years, served on the board of directors for the Carlos Otis Stratton Mountain Clinic and was president from 1997-2011.
King relished hosting events. He developed annual ski conferences at Stratton for his clients. His and Barbara’s Fourth of July parties at their home in Manchester were legendary. For the Wrights, sport was an enduring passion. They were avid skiers, golfers and scuba divers. They shared a love of travel, exploring the world from Alaska to Australia to Europe and beyond in pursuit of adventure. Especially dear to them was skiing with their children and grandchildren. They left barely a trail untracked from Vermont to Colorado to Austria.
Predeceased by his wife Barbara and his sister Laree Wright Humphries, he is survived by his children, Laura Wright Wooton of Louisville, Kentucky, and John King Wright, Jr., (Kelly) of Geneva, Switzerland, and stepchildren, Elizabeth Blair Marotto (Bob) of Ponte Vedra Beach, and John Davidson Savage (Cynthia) of Stamford, Connecticut. King and Barbara were also survived by nine grandchildren: Jake, Phoebe, Clay, Ryan, Annabel, Carter, Nick, Luke and Lucy.
A memorial service will be held at a later date. Interment will be in the family plot in Elm Grove Cemetery in Mystic, Connecticut. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Stratton Mountain Carlos Otis Clinic, PO Box 617, Stratton Mountain, VT 05155.