BY LOUIS C. WARD
LAKE COUNTY – The debonair Charles Wright went home to glory last month.
As usual, Charles always had a flair when doing things, and of course, going home to glory, was no different.
“He was ready.” Louis Berry, his better half for more than fifty years, said. “We’ve entertained people. We’ve traveled on the road and on cruises together. We’ve enjoyed life. We’ve done everything we wanted to do. That’s why he said he was ready.”
Commanding a memorable and receptive personality with a strong presence, Charles, or Uncle Charles, or Wright always left an impression on those he’d met for the first time. He had an aura and a smile that drew you to him and compelled you to pay attention and listen to whatever he said, whether it was an intellectual or “just talking/just saying” kind of conversation.”
When asked what impressed her about Charles, there was no hesitation, no thought needed. “His mouth,” Ms. Louise immediately revealed.
“We met in Miami, Florida at Lums restaurant. I was working in education, training students how to keep a job. Charles was employed with the University of Miami. My friends and I would go to Lums for lunch. Charles and other guys would be there running their mouths… debating. Sometimes it was intellectual, sometimes it was sports, sometimes it was the topic of what was important for that moment. Whatever they talked about, Charles would always seem to have the other guys’ ears when he spoke.”
Everyone who knew Charles Wright would agree that he liked to meet people. He liked to talk. He was a people’ person. But he also liked to work behind the scenes where he got things done. Charles was very knowledgeable about politics, social issues, and important topics concerning the improvement of peoples’ lives in his community.
He worked to get many students scholarships to attend Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU). He fought for the dual program in engineering between FAMU and Florida State University. His presentation was very convincing. FAMU was able to keep the dual program because of Charles’ successful discourse.
Charles and Louise lived in The Villages. He was very active in the Village Democratic Club and the Sophisticated Gents of Florida.
Working behind the scenes, Charles was an important catalyst in getting Allison Berry elected to the Leesburg City Commission in 2022. There are so many times Charles was instrumental in improving the lives of his community.
In a solemn moment, Ms. Louise said, “Charles was always willing and I will certainly miss him. When death comes, we are never ready for it.”
Charles Wright, Uncle Charles, and Wright, any one of these names is befitting a man that loved to talk to others, loved to laugh with others, and, when necessary, Charles stood his ground because he loved to help make a difference for others.