Sheriff Seth F. Wright « Utah Law Enforcement Memorial

Sheriff Seth F. Wright

Died on October 14, 1960

Age 53
San Juan County Sheriff’s Office
Accidental: Aircraft

Sheriff Wright became the first Utah police officer to die in an aircraft crash. The 53-year-old victim was returning a prisoner to Utah by private aircraft from Texas. Near Montrose, Colorado, over Black Canyon of the Gunnison River, the aircraft developed mechanical problems and crashed. Sheriff Wright, the pilot and the prisoner were killed. Sheriff Wright was married and the father of four children. He is buried in Monticello City Cemetery. His bronze name plaque is sponsored by the Seth F. Wright Family.

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2 responses to “Sheriff Seth F. Wright”

  1. […] have died in aircraft accidents. The first death occurred in 1960, when San Juan County Sheriff SETH F. WRIGHT was returning from Texas with a prisoner. The plane crashed in Colorado, killing all three people […]

    • Bob Dalton says:

      During my teen years,in particular my latter teen years I grew up with Seth Wright as our County Sheriff.The previous Sheriff to Seth was Tully Harvey, an exceptional man and fine Sheriff. My experience with Tully was limited to him chasing me a few times for driving when I was thirteen. I really respected him for the way he treated me each time and when I grew up we became good friends, despite the age difference, However, that could not have happened if not for Seth Wright. As I reached sixteen and working a man’s job for man pay, became overly aggressive and pretty Damn unruly. I had been fighting bigger, older Mexicans since I was six and at sixteen, 6’6″, 200 lbs, I was taking on all comers and always winning. I was a shift Boss for one of America’s biggest Mining Companies and was pretty much COCK-OF-THE-WALK and in 1954 J, July 24, some of my crew and I caulked the bed of our Company truck and filled it full of Ice and Beer, to go to the 24th Dance. During the dance some of us went for a Beer only to find a bunch of Ute Indians stealing Beer out of the back of our truck. They took off in their truck and four of us took of after them in the Company truck. We chased them four miles south of town and run them off the road. There was seven of them and boy did the fight begin. Unknown to three of us one member of our party had picked up a claw hammer from the floorboards and when the fight was over we had one very seriously hurt Indian. The guy with the hammer was not one of our mine crew. Anyway, back in town and a couple of hours later the three , including me, were confronted by Seth Wright, and I mean he was mad. After a brief scuffle Seth had all our asses in jail. Seth took statements and after introducing me to a fine fellow, named Judge Keller, who introduced me to a Navy Recruiting Officer where I got a real good five and one half year tour of the world, especially the Pacific and enjoyed a very distinguished Tour of Duty. After I got released to Reserve Status, I returned to Monticello and Seth Wright. I had not gotten over my propensity to mix-it-up and when someone did me wrong it was instant “KNUCKLE & SCULL” This went on for about four months and I was working for San Juan County Roads, when about July 15 I pulled into the County yard and was met by Seth Wright, Carlos Hall, Ray McAlister and Little Johnny King, all Sheriff’s Department. Seth told me he had come to recruit me to join the Department and help them on the 24th or the four of them would beat my ass so bad I would not be any trouple on the 24th. Well that was my turning point and joined the as a Deputy Sheriff. Seth made the difference in my life and I will love him forever !!

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