John Wright

24-May-1961 - 07-Jan-2021

Obituary Overview

In Loving Memory


It is with extraordinarily heavy hearts we share the loss of a deeply loved and respected man, John Michael Wright. John passed away peacefully in hospital on January 7th 2021, aged 59, with his wife Beth and son Matthew holding his hands. John’s passing was brutally swift and unexpected resulting from a lung infection igniting a previously dormant lung condition (not related to COVID-19).

John was pre-deceased by his parents William Thomas Wright, and Eileen Wright. He leaves behind his devastated wife of 35 years Beth Karpetz-Wright, and equally desolate son Matthew. Sweet doggie Teika is wondering where her ‘John’ is. He is also survived by his loving sister Sharon (Brian) McKay and niece Katie, mother-in-law Edith Karpetz, sister-in-law Ramona (Ron) Matthews, his nephews Jonathan and Greg Matthews, and their lovely wives Meghan and Laura. John’s  generous hospitality and loyal friendship will be remembered fondly by both family and friends.

John lived to make an abundant life for his small beloved family. He was a loving and deeply cherished husband, and a devoted and adored father. His favourite topic of conversation according to condolences received,  was his son Matthew whose intelligence and joie-de-vivre John respected and admired profoundly. There was never a more proud father. John ‘s role and example as a father, mentor, businessman, gentleman, and friend has left Matthew with a deep and lasting legacy.

John was both well known and well regarded in the Marketing community in Toronto over his 35 year career. He held a B. Comm degree from U of T, as well as an MBA from the Schulich School of Business (York University).

He began his career at Ogilvy and Mather in the 1980’s. Successful stints at Chiat-Day, and Promenade were followed by John joining the dynamic team who founded and developed the Air Miles Rewards Program at LoyaltyOne. John remained there as SVP and a member of the Executive Committee for almost a decade. In January 2005, he joined Wunderman Canada, ending his time there as President in 2010. In his last role, John pursued his passion for championing business education by leading the Canadian Management Centre (CMC) as President and Managing Director. Former colleagues and clients alike have been flooding the family with fond stories of John’s “people first”, “open door”, “collaborative”, and “compassionate” leadership example. John was known for his integrity, high standards, authentic care for his colleagues, and consistent professionalism, but mostly for his ability to listen to all with a deep personal attention and offer a wise and always thoughtful point of view.

John gave back through his long-time board memberships at the Canadian Marketing Association, as Faculty Advisor to the Institute of Communication Agencies, and Board Member of Special Olympics Canada. He also served on the board of the National Advertising Benevolent Society (NABS) for 10 years. John’s final act of giving was being a multiple organ donor through the Trillium Gift of Life program.

The family sends a special thank you and big hug to the Nurses, Doctors and all Front-line Workers at St. Joseph’s Healthcare in Hamilton, Ontario for treating John with such a high calibre of expertise, kindness, and dignity during the two weeks of his illness. A grateful salute as well to the incredible team of Nurses and Lab Technicians who have to work so quickly, often overnight, to make organ donation a reality.

A heartfelt thank you to our family, friends, and colleagues for the outpouring of prayers and support.

A Celebration of Life will be held for John post COVID restrictions, when it is safe to do so. In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made in John’s name to NABS (providing support for those in the advertising industry going through struggles) or, The Firestone Institute for Respiratory Health at St. Joseph’s Healthcare in Hamilton.

John/Dad, our hearts are shattered. Your memory will be a blessing to all who knew you. You are deeply loved and will never be forgotten. 

Please take a moment to share a memory or leave a message of condolence in the guest book.

Posted by Dave Moxley | 03-Feb-2021

Lesley and my deepest condolences to Beth and John's family. I worked with John at Air Miles...quite, soft spoken and a very deep thinker. He always had a great idea to 'pitch'. I still remember 2x4 marketing. A simple, single high value message that your client target 'get' and 'act' on..."like getting hit over the head with a 2x4!" A patient leader and great teacher. We worked hard as pioneers to change business with a new set of capabilities during the 1990's...then after hours enjoyed each other companionship so much we laughed till it hurt.

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Posted by Bénédicte Steyns | 27-Jan-2021

Deepest condolences to John's family and our CMC colleagues from the MCE Team in Europe. We are so sorry for your loss and sad we have lost a good colleague. John will be missed.

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