The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced that U.S. Army 1st Lt. James E. Wright, 25, of Lumber Bridge, North Carolina, killed during World War II, was accounted for on July 9, 2021.
1LT James Earl “Dick” Wright was born in Parkton, North Carolina on October 16, 1918 and graduated from Parkton High School. His wife, Margaret Canady Wright, his mother, Mamie Chason Wright, and father Robert A Wright are deceased, as are his brothers, William, Robert, Walter, and Thomas, and his sisters, Mary Louise Johnson, Mable Cottrell, Madeline Yates, and Doris Lanius. He was a member of the Lumber Bridge Baptist Church and the Parkton National Guard.
He is survived by his one remaining sibling, his sister, Elizabeth Wright Harper, age 100, of Sanford FL. 4 nephews and 6 nieces, and numerous great nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Wright was assigned in September 1944 to the 5th Infantry Division, a part of Lt. Gen. George S. Patton’s Third Army. On the morning of Sept. 8, 1944, Wright’s unit was part of a larger force ordered to cross the Moselle River and take up a position in the woods. The force held its position against the Germans and took heavy losses until Sept. 10, 1944 when they crossed the river again. Only then were they allowed to retreat. Most of the soldiers were able to retreat, though some officers stayed behind to search for the wounded or missing before crossing again. Wright had already taken a boat to the German-occupied side of the river and rescued three wounded servicemen, ferried them back to safety with the Allies, and was last seen crossing the river again toward the German lines to search for more wounded. For this act of heroism, he was posthumously awarded the Silver Star. Wright was among the soldiers reported missing, and his body was not recovered due to the fighting and the German presence.
Visitation will be 10:00 AM -12:00 Noon Tuesday, October 12, 2021 at Lumber Bridge Baptist Church, 100 Church Street, Lumber Bridge, NC 28371.
1LT Wright Funeral Caisson will depart at 12:00 Noon from Lumber Bridge Baptist Church and arrive at Oakdale Cemetery in Lumber Bridge. Full Honors Graveside service will follow with CH (LTC) Douglas Alan Windley Officiating.
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