Phoenix, AZ, February 22, 2018 – The Arizona advertising industry lost a legend this week when Larry John of Larry John Wright Advertising, Inc. passed away. Larry John joined forces with his life-long friend, John Wright, to create the full service, in-house creative agency in 1984.
Larry John: Early Beginnings
Born in Mesa, Arizona in 1948 to Charles Floyd and Opal John, Larry John discovered his calling at an early age. By the age of 5, Larry was already making a mark in the industry as a regular on a local Phoenix TV and radio show, “The Lew King Ranger Show.” At age 8, he started playing the drums in a Dixieland band, “The Mesa Imps,” and he continued to play in various bands and venues, for fun and for professional purposes for decades. Larry sang, tap danced, acted, announced and did countless live commercials.
Larry John: College Years
After high school, Larry served a two-year religious mission in Bolivia for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Larry then attended Arizona State University on a Music-Drama scholarship for two years, transferred to Brigham Young University and received a B.A. degree in Advertising and Broadcasting.
During his time in Utah, Larry played in numerous bands, performed for 10 years on his own TV show, “Hotel Balderdash,” owned his own newspaper, “The Deseret Gazette,” and was a local morning radio personality on KOVO, a rock n’ roll station, and KFTN, a country station. During this time, Larry also started his own advertising agency. After moving back to Arizona with his family in 1982, Larry created Larry John Advertising and Public Relations, the precursor of his mightiest contribution to the Arizona advertising industry: Larry John Wright Advertising, Inc. founded in 1984 after joining with John Wright.
Larry John: The Man
Of all his accomplishments, Larry was most dedicated and proud of his family: his wife, Michal, who he knew was the one after only 1 week of dating, his 7 children (Jessica, Sam, Joe, Preston, David, Kimmy, and Jaquelyn) and 19 grandchildren. His love for them could not be eclipsed by any accomplishment– even though his list of accomplishments is an impressive one.
- Co-founded Larry John Wright, Inc.
- Became a Real Estate Broker and started his own Real Estate Company.
- Served as Pistol Pete’s Pizza spokesperson.
- Produced the Arizona Cowboy TV show.
- In 2003 Arizona Broadcasters’ Association Hall of Fame inductee, honoring Larry for his contributions of over 50 years in Broadcasting and Advertising.
- Authored two books: “Think Rich to Get Rich” and “Larryisms.”
- Produced numerous shows during his time in Maui: The Tub Radio Station, Tub TV, Cannonball and Harvey Podcast, Larry and Randy, Maui’s Hotel Balderdash kids’ show, A Maui Music Moment, Larryisms, Maui Live, On Exhibit with Bill Best, and Working for Maui.
Larry John was so many things to so many people: a philosopher, an advertising and marketing genius, a pragmatic thinker, an actor, an announcer, a husband, a father, a boss, a music lover, a cowboy and the list could go on. But for most, he was first and foremost, a friend – one they loved and respected. He will be missed.
Larry John Wright, Inc.: Since 1984
Larry John Wright, Inc. is a full service in-house creative agency. We work with clients to facilitate their creative, production, advertising, marketing and digital needs.
For more information about Larry John or his legacy at Larry John Wright Advertising, Inc., please get in touch.