Estelle S. Wright was a member of Loris City Council for two decades beginning in 1994.
And even though she passed away in March of this year at the age of 97, her legacy lives on through a generous donation made by her estate to the city.
On Sept. 18, Loris Mayor Todd Harrelson and Interim City Administrator Dennis Drozdak accepted a check for $225,000 from the Wright estate to be used to help pay down the debt owed on the city’s Public Safety Building.
The building, dedicated in 2012, cost the city $1.14 million and is being paid off over 40 years.
Harrelson said he was overwhelmed when he was informed of the gift the city was receiving but he was not surprised because he knew how generous Wright was all of her life.
“I thought a lot of her. Her love for Loris and its people was always being shown,” he said.
Drozdak said the gift came as a surprise when the city received a letter from her trust company in July informing them of the donation. He said she created the trust in 1985.
“It’s astounding someone would be that generous. That is a lot of money. We get donations of $5,000 or $10,000 on occasion. I have never seen that magnitude in my time,” he said.
The construction of the public safety building was the final major capital improvement projects Wright helped approve during her decades on council.
In 2014, when she retired from her council seat, Wright was honored for her decades of service.
She was presented a key to the city by former Mayor David Stoudenmire.
“God gave many talents to Estelle Wright, and she has used them all for the betterment of Loris,” Stoudenmire said as he made the presentation.