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In Passing

In Passing
Kenneth J Wright Print E-mail
By Phillip R Smith   
September 13, 2013

Kenneth J. Wright (1970-2013)

Kenneth J. "Kenny" Wright, a former USCF member from Natick, Massachusetts, formerly of Wayland, Mass., died Sept. 8, 2013 in Metrowest Medical Center in Natick. He was 43. He was born on Feb. 8, 1970 in Newton, Mass., the son of Russell J. and Linda M. (Gaudet) Wright, and was raised in Wayland. He had worked for 15 years for the Wright Brothers Roofing Company of Natick.

A former member of the Massachusetts Chess Association, Kenny was one of the most active scholastic players in the state during the late 1970s and throughout the 1980s. His father turned him onto chess when he was 7 years old.

In May1981 he won the National Elementary School Chess Championship in Phoenix, Arizona, where he scored. 7.5-0.5 to beat out a field of 371 players. The fifth-grader at Happy Hollow School in Wayland financed the trip to Phoenix with money earned on his paper route. He saved for nine months, foregoing the 10-speed bicycle that beckoned from his dreams. Instead he put the money toward airline tickets for himself and his father. When he flew home with his father, the first-place trophy was strapped to an extra seat in the plane's cockpit.

When Kenny was a sophomore at Wayland High School, he won the Massachusetts State High School Chess Championship. He was a member of the (John) "Collins Kids" chess team that traveled to Iceland. He played in many tournaments at the Metrowest Chess Club in Natick and at the Boylston Chess Club, when that club was located in Boston. He gave up over-the-board rated chess after September 2005, when he played in his last tournament at the Metrowest CC.

Besides his mother, he is survived by his paternal grandfather, Russell W. Wright of Waterboro, Maine; three uncles, Richard Wright and Robert Gaudet, both of Natick, and Victor Wright of Waterboro, Maine; and three aunts, Susan Seeley of Center Harbor, New Hampshire, Elizabeth Rancourt of Berwick, Maine, and Joan Wright of Old Orchard Beach, Maine. He was predeceased by a brother, Russell J. Wright Jr., a former longtime USCF member.

Obituary submitted by
George Mirijanian, Massachusetts Chess Association

Kenneth J. Wright may you rest in peace