Plastics compounding pioneer Raymond Wright died Oct. 30 at age 90.
Wright worked in accounting and finance as an accountant after serving in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War. He began his plastics career in 1965 when he joined early plastics compounder Fiberfil in Evansville, Ind. Wright, an Evansville native, eventually became sales and marketing vice president at Fiberfil, which is now part of DSM Engineering Materials.
According to an obituary, while at Fiberfil, Wright "transitioned into his first management role and realized pretty quickly it was a role he excelled at. … As a manager, Ray identified several inefficiencies in operations at Fiberfil and set out to conquer the plastics industry on his own."
In 1973, Wright left Fiberfil to start his own compounding firm, Complas Industries. He sold Evansville-based Complas — and a related firm, Replas — to Ferro Corp. in 1979. That business now is part of LyondellBasell.
Wright in 1985 founded Matrixx Group, another Evansville compounder, and retired after selling that firm to Wind Point Partners in 2007.
In 1998, Wright received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society of Plastics Engineers. He also started several other businesses, both in plastics and in other industries, including Cambridge Golf Course, Buchta Trucking and Four-M Properties.
The obituary said that outside of work, Wright was a longtime member of Oak Hill Bible Fellowship, where he also sang in the choir, cut the grass and helped with landscaping. He was an avid fan and booster of the University of Southern Indiana and University of Evansville basketball programs.
Wright was on the boards of the Evansville Association for the Blind and the Evansville Rescue Mission.
Wright was preceded in death by Marilyn, his wife of 65 years, and his son Matthew. He's survived by his sons Michael and Mark, six grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
Visitation and a service for Wright will take place Nov. 3 at Christian Fellowship Church in Evansville. The Wright family has requested that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the ALS Association in his name.