The Optimists Alumni Drum & Bugle Corps
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Corps: Toronto Optimists, Bantam Optimists, Cardinals of Precious Blood, Emerald Knights
January 3, 1946 – December 11, 2015
On a fall evening in 1961, at Oak Park Junior High School in east-end Toronto, George Wright and I (Vern Johansson) joined the Bantam Optimists. I had never met George before but he made me laugh. From the Bantams, George moved up to the Junior Corps in the fall of 1963. He was an Optimist in name and attitude.
George accomplished a great deal in drum corps. He played in the much-awarded Baritone Quartet. His positive attitude was always infectious and his laughter could always be heard. George was Corpsman of the Year in 1967. In 1971, George married the love of his life, Rose Ferraro, sister of his best friend, Optimists Tenor Drummer, Vince Ferraro.
George became Corps Director of the Optimists during a very difficult period in the ’70’s and guided them through a thicket of problems. He was also Corps Director for Cardinals of Precious Blood and the Emerald Knights in Mississauga, which included his daughters, Lisa, Danielle and Alison. George was one of the 4 Founders of the Optimists Alumni. He was a true and loyal Optimist and loved every moment of his involvement. I will never forget him. Or his laugh.
Here are a few comments from some of those who knew him.
"I'll always remember you as a diminutive bundle of unbridled passion, eternal optimism, contagious humour and leadership by principle and example. The world is a slightly lesser place without you." (Greg)
"Whenever I hear the name George Wright, it brings a smile to my face! He was a very passionate and very funny guy! I will miss him a lot! "
"A very committed individual. It was both an honour and a privilege to march and work with him in The Optimists Alumni." (Bill)
George . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . We Remember!