Last Known Activity PO3 MM Charles Edwin “Charlie” Wright, U.S. Navy, age 87, of Darby, Montana, passed away Monday, 10 May 2010, at his home. Charles was born 19 June 1922, in Big Fork, Minnesota, the 13th of 14 children born of Matt and Lena Wright.
At the age of 18, Charles went to California to work in an aircraft factory for a year and then to Redding, California, to work on the Shasta Dam. Charles joined the U.S. Navy in 1942 and served on a floating dry dock in the South Pacific during World War II.
Charles married Ardith Nordin in 1947 and they had three girls, Judith Ann, Sandra Kay, and Kathleen. They moved to California in 1953 and Charles worked in earth work driving heavy equipment. Charles liked operating a motor grader the best. Charles and Ardith divorced in 1977. Charles continued to own and operate a motor grader until 1983.
Charles married Lena Mae Ikenberry Dembisky in 1981. He introduced her to square and round dancing, which they enjoyed for 26 years. Charles loved traveling in an RV. They moved to Darby, Montan, in 1983 when he and his step-son Michael Dembisky brought Darby Distribution. Charles worked at Darby Distribution until 1990 when he and Lena started going south in the winter.
Charles accepted the Lord as his Savior in the Lutheran Church in Minnesota and he attended church in Darby for 25 years at the First Baptist Church. He enjoyed fishing, hunting, dancing, play cribbage, and other card games, traveling, wood carving, working in his shop on his lathe, and gardening. He especially enjoyed visiting with his friends. He was a member of the Darby Volunteer Fire Department for ten years. He was also a member of the American Legion.
Charles was preceded in death by six sisters, five brothers, and a daughter. Surviving include his wife Lena of Darby; daughters Sandra (Dale) Ploung of Corona, California, and Kathy (Steve) Willey of Galt, California; step-daughter Marianne Cox of Lowell, Massachusetts; step-sons Michael (Rhonda) Dembisky of Darby and Charles (Vicki) Dembisky of Amherst, New Hampshire; four granddaughters, ten great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
Charles will be missed by many but not forgotten!
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, 14 May 2010, at the Daly-Leach Chapel in Hamilton, Montana. Interment will follow at Lone Pine Cemetery at Darby with military honors presented by the U.S. Army, Hamilton American Legion, and Marine Corps League – Bitterroot Detachment. There will be a reception following the committal service at the home of Mike Dembisky.
In lieu of flowers the family suggests memorials to the Darby Volunteer Fire Department. Condolences may be left for the family at www.dalyleachchapel.com
Service Number: 3771187
USS ARD-9 was an auxiliary repair drydock serving with the United States Navy during World War II.
ARD-9 was commissioned at Alameda, California on 25 September 1943, towed to San Francisco Bay, and anchored near the Floating Drydock Training Center at Tiburon, California. She had five dockings before leaving the United States.
ARD-9 left the US on 12 December 1943 in a convoy of five ships: A cargo ship (AK), the Navy tug USS YUMA towing the USS ARD-10, and the METAMORA, a Merchant Marine tug towing the ARD-9. At sea, the ship headed SSW and crossed the equator at 151 degrees and 50 minutes. She was 56 days at sea without seeing land. As the convoy entered the Coral Sea it was given an escort by an Australian warship. The ARD-10 then left the convoy and went onto Perth, Australia. ARD-9 anchored in Milne Bay, New Guinea on 6 February 1944.
ARD-9 was struck on 15 April 1976 and was transferred to the Republic of China in October 1976, where she served as Wo Fu (ARDS-5).Sold to the Republic of China in 1977
ARD-9 was built by Pacific Bridge Company, Alameda, California.