It is with profound sadness that we announce the death of Dennis A. Bright. Dennis lived life well. He enjoyed his youth in Idaho and made Utah his home with Kaye Daniels (his wife of 62 years). Dennis is the proud father of Michelle, Jaren and Eric (Cicely) and is adoringly known as Papa to his grandchildren Lindsay (Ian), Kailey (Cody), Caden, Kai, Keegan, Cooper, and Sylvie and seven great-grandchildren Dax, Jonah, Tess, Crew, Evie, Laynee, and Daisy. His love for family was deep and abiding. Dennis was preceded in death by his son Jaren, parents Bud and Eddie, a sister Kim and brothers Barry and Darris.
Dennis grew up in the small town of Teton, Idaho living an idyllic life with his brothers Barry and Darris, his mother Eddie ("Dede") and his father Charles ("Bud").
His body nourished by a diet of sourdough pancakes (made from an ol' family start), homemade chokecherry syrup (fruit picked from the bush), chicken n' nifflies (from scratch), and fresh rhubarb pie (rhubarb straight from the garden). His work ethic nourished by the examples of Dede working in the garden and Bud cutting hair as the town barber on Main Street. His soul nourished by time at the ballfields with the fellas, swimming in the canal, riding horses in the pasture, jumping off of the St. Anthony bridge into the Snake, swimming the Channel, and hanging out in the "wise old owl clubhouse" he and his friends made out of the rickety ol' granary at the back of the pasture.
Dennis and his brothers were inseparable. While he and his twin, Darris, didn't look much alike physically, Dede ensured they looked exactly alike stylistically in the matching outfits she hand made for them – had they not moved out of the house they may have dressed the same well into their adult lives. They stalwartly watched over each other. Like the time Darris ran along the bank of the canal yelling "don't cry Denny, don't cry" as Dennis struggled to stay above water. Or that day in Sunday School when the teacher was whacking a chatty Darris on the head while asking him "how do you like that? how do you like that?" prompting Dennis to respond by rolling up his own paper and whacking the teacher asking "how do YOU like that?"
As 17 year olds, Dennis first met Kaye Daniels when she and some friends traveled from their home in Ashton, Idaho to the little “big” city of St. Anthony. As Kaye and her friends "cruised the main drag" around the town park Dennis hustled up to the car full of ladies and introduced himself to Kaye, not knowing then she would one day become his wife and partner for the rest of his life.
During their courtship, Dad would drive the 20 miles from Teton to Ashton, pick up Kaye and head back to St. Anthony to catch a show at the drive-in, “cut a rug” at a tri-stake dance, or head "up country" to Island Park. Often, after returning Kaye to Ashton, Dennis would pull over and sleep on the side of Highway 20 when he was too tired to make it back to Teton. (Dede didn't love that so much.)
Dennis and Kaye brought three children into the world, Michelle, Jaren, and Eric. Jaren lived only two weeks with a malformed heart, but he was as important to them as Michelle and Eric (who between the two of them caused most of the gray hairs on their heads). It seemed Dennis never missed a game or event his children were participating in. Often stalking the sidelines with a mouth stuffed full of sunflower seeds while hollering and heckling with the rest of the parents in the peanut gallery.
Dennis's attention to detail was renowned. From his pegboard tool walls with every square inch filled like a Tetris board of hammers, rakes, carpenter squares, pruners, screwdrivers and
I can tell you he was one of the finest people I have ever met. shovels to his always shiny cars with slick black tires to his yard adorned with perfectly manicured shrubs, three-inch high edges around the lawn, and lush flower gardens – the latter earning him the nickname "Mr. Miyagi" amongst his kids' friends.
Dad worked a number of jobs over the years with the Forest Service job in Island Park and his role as an account executive with Johns Manville being the bookend highlights of a successful career. His ethic and character was attested to recently by a former colleague who said "I can tell you [Dennis] was one of the finest people I have ever met."
In 2010, Dennis left his office desk behind and ran headlong through retirement right into his most cherished role as Papa. His seven grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren were the greatest joy of his life. When he wasn't traveling hours to support them at soccer matches, dance recitals, baseball games, mountain bike races, or birthday parties he was digging trails for them in the mountainside behind his and Kaye's home with landmarks along the path named for each and every one of them.
He was active right up until his last few months playing soccer with his grand kids, helping remodel his daughter's house, tenderly and insightfully reaching out to those of his family he felt needed help, and hauling bark up the aforementioned trail to get it ready for the grandkid’s summer visits.
He was the last of the Teton Brights, a cherished colleague, friend, brother, son, uncle, husband, Dad, and Papa. We will miss him every day, but we'll also be grateful every day for the indelible mark he has left on our lives.
He really was one of the finest people we have ever met.
If you have a memory or photo of Dennis the family would greatly appreciate you adding a memory to the timeline or signing the guestbook using the links below.
A celebration of life will be held at a later date.
- Survived By
- Eleanore Kaye Bright, Spouse
- Michelle Campbell, Daughter
- Eric Bright (Cicely), Son
- Preceded in Death By
- Charles Artell Bright, Father
- Edna Leilla Bright, Mother
- Kim Bright, Sister
- Barry Bright, Brother
- Darris Bright, Brother
- Jaren Christopher Bright, Son
Life Story Info
Cause of Death
- US Forest Service
- Strevell Paterson
- Johns Manville
Primary SchoolTeton Elementary School
High SchoolSouth Fremont High School
Mom, Barry, Darris (left) and Dennis (right).
Eddie, Bud, Darris and Dennis.
Dennis around 1949.
Barry taking care of Dennis and Darris in a scene straight out of A Christmas Story.
Darris and Dennis (right) behind the house in Teton.
Dad loving his youth out on the ice in Idaho.
Dennis about the time he met Kaye.
Senior picture in 1957
Aug 10, 2019
Walking a grand-daughter down the aisle.
After 62 years.
I grew up in Teton and have great memories of the Bright family, including Edie, Dennis, and Michelle. My condolences for you all.
Thank you so much for your kind words. Those summers in Teton were the "BEST"
Dennis was one of my favorite people. I hadn't seen him for years but never stopped thinking about him. Gordon Holt hired him at Strevell Paterson for the hardware department. I couldn't steal him fast enough for the automotive division. Dennis was truly a class act. We almost killed each other during a midnight full moon snowmobiling excursion in the mountains above Afton Wyoming. I still don't know where that moose came from.
So sorry for your loss. I knew Dennis from the business world in the early 1980's on, as first one of his customers and later as a partial competitor. Dennis always had a high sense of honor in all his dealings.
I grew up in Teton with the Bright Family since 1947. My Mom, Geneva Briggs was a close friend to Edie. I have a great love and fond memories of the Family.
I'm sad to read of the passing of the "Last of the Teton Brights." Clifford Bright is my father and he loved to go visiting in Teton. I was at BYU when Barry was (and also Don, a cousin.) Artell died the day my youngest son was born. (November 23, 1977) Our last two horses, Shadow and Copper, lived out their lives in Artel's pasture. It was a wonderful place for them. I send love and sympathy to Dennis's family.
Clifta Bright Tobler.
I'm sorry to learn of the passing of Dennis. That Teton Bright family was a favorite of my mother, Edythe Bright Casper. There were many family stories shared about Artell and Uncle Charl. I remember as a little girl going up to Teton with my mother and Pop, Clifford, and riding horses. Condolences to your family. You are in my thoughts.
It is so sad to hear of the passing of your dear husband, Dennis, Kaye. I send to you and your family my deepest sympathy and warmest thoughts.
Thank you Bonnie ~ it has been a struggle. Appreciate your kind words
My heart filled with sadness at the news of Dennis passing but then filled with love and fond memories of all the time I spent with the family as a child. How lucky I was to have each of them in my life. I am so sorry for your loss. My love and prayers are with you.
So sorry to hear of your loss Kaye. I love all the memories as a teammate in sports, the drives through Rexburg, the swimming in the river. Great memories for me and I hope you and your family. May peace be with you during a difficult time.
I am so sorry to hear this. Michelle and family, my condolences to all of you. I have so many wonderful memories of him, Dede and your family. Thinking of you all and sending my love your way.
Thank you Shannon for your kind words.
Although we lost touch over the years we,ve never stopped thinking about the good friends we had. Jeff thinking back this morning about the sales guys meeting up for morning coffee. We are so sorry for your loss. We extend our deepest condolences to you and your family.
Sad to see this. Delivering papers in the neighborhood and then later as one of the many kids underfoot, Dennis Bright treated me exceptionally kindly even though I rarely deserved it. And I was always amazed and impressed at how perfect his lawn and yard were kept. I ran into Kaye and Dennis at my brother's restaurant several years ago and had a wonderful catch-up visit. The Bright's were and are a wonderful part of 260 North.
What wonderful memories I have of my cousin, Dennis and his family. Aunt Edna was a favorite aunt as we shared a birthday. Family reunions and other gatherings we great events. I remember many visits to Teton. May your fond memories bring comfort and peace at this time. We extend our deepest sympathy.
Robert and Elna Hollist
It was an honor for me to know and learn from Dennis. I saw the love he has for his family and heard about it through the dedication and detail he gave each of you. He always talked about the most recent interactions with all of his Grand and great Grand kids. His long hours and long drives to support family are a wonderful example for me to follow. He is a great man and craftsman. He will be missed!
Thanks Tim - we plan an Open House Memorial on
Friday, April 29th from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.
I met Dennis while he was working on Michelle’s house. He was always kind and cheerful. I was impressed by all the things he could do at that stage of his life.
Thanks Val - He did like to keep busy. We plan an Open House Memorial on April 29th from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m., at Eldredge Manor in Bountiful, Utah.
Lots of Love from the Garffs!
Thanks for thinking about us - sad time