Paul Ronald (Ronnie) Wright beloved by family and friends suddenly passed away on February 27, 2023, at the age of 83. Paul was born in Phoenix, Arizona, but spent his formative years in Yucaipa, California and Salt Lake City, Utah. He is survived by his devoted wife of 12 years, Dolores Wright; and two of his four children, Geoffrey Wright and Cynthia Freeman; nine grandchildren, five great-grandchildren and five siblings. He was preceded in death by his first wife of 45 years, Kathleen Wright; children Jacqui Bursztynsky and Emily Wright; sibling Michaeleen Butterfield and his parents Helen Malpass and Paul Wright, Sr.

Paul was especially known for his dedication to his family, children, grand-children and great-grandchildren and his community. Throughout his life he held leadership roles in many of the children’s activities. He was a Girl Scout leader; Boy Scout leader; International Order of Rainbow for Girls – Rainbow Pop and Board Member; Jobs Daughters International – Associate Guardian; and DeMolay for Boys. Additionally, he was an active volunteer for nearly twenty years with the Northern Counties Logging Interpretive Association, a precursor to the Timber Heritage Association, and volunteered thousands of hours supporting their causes of acquiring, preserving and displaying antique steam powered and other logging equipment, in Humboldt and Mendocino Counties. He was also docent at the Humboldt Maritime Museum. He dedicated many summers with his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren at his home in Eureka, where he taught them horseback riding, camping skills, woodworking, boating, and antique car renovation. He took his protégés on many camping adventures, numerous times to the beach and area lakes, car shows and across the western states to visit many national parks.

In his professional life he held many upper management roles in Bell Laboratories; New Jersey, Pacific and Nevada Bell; and with AT&T. He helped to design many up-and-coming technologies in phone services, computer systems development and leadership within the telephone company. He was dedicated to many charities in his home and state communities, and through his dedication to helping others succeed, brought hope and service to Masonic and Masonic youth organizations.

Paul was greatly dedicated to his extended fraternal family within the Masonic Orders, including the Masonic Lodge, Order of Eastern Star, Order of Amaranth, White Shrine of Jerusalem, Tall Cedars of Lebanon, Scottish Rite, Shriners and was a previous member of the Odd Fellows Lodge. He began his affiliation with the Masonic Lodge in New Jersey in his late thirties. He was Raised to Master Mason and served in many positions during the forty plus years of service. He held many of the highest offices in these organizations, including Past Master of multiple Masonic Lodges, Grand Steward with the Grand Lodge of California; Grand Junior Warden with the Order of Eastern Star of California; Grand Royal Patron of the Order of Amaranth and member of Ferndale and Camelia Chapter of the Order of Eastern Star; the Black Diamond Court with the Order of Amaranth in California; Member with Tall Cedars of Lebanon in New Jersey; Member of the Jinn’s Band and Renegades Mini Car Unit with the Aahmmes Shriners in California; and Member of Scottish Rite in California. Other community service included membership with the Model A Club and the Eureka Rhododendron Club.

A memorial service, open to all, is planned for March 17, 2023 at 10 a.m. at the Goble’s Mortuary at 560 12th Street in Fortuna, immediately followed by a reception with light refreshments. A public viewing is available from 3 to 7 p.m. on March 16, 2023 at the mortuary. A private graveside service is planned for family after the service.


The obituary above was submitted on behalf of Ronnie Wright’s loved ones. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here. Email