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Allnutt Funeral Service – Drake Road Chapel

650 W. Drake Rd., Ft. Collins, CO

OBITUARY

Dwight Louis Ghent

December 23, 1922January 18, 2020

Dwight Louis Ghent passed away peacefully at his home on January 18, 2020 surrounded by his loving family.

Dwight was born in Craig, Colorado on December 23, 1922 where his family homesteaded. When he was two, his family moved to Fort Collins. At age 16, Dwight joined the Colorado National Guard but two years later when the National Guard mobilized, he was released as he was too young to be deployed. He graduated from Fort Collins High School in 1941 and immediately enrolled in Colorado State University. He studied there for one year before joining the US Army Air Corp to serve in World War II. He was a second lieutenant in the US Army Corp (now Air Force) where he piloted a B-26 Marauder Bomber in the 1st Tactical Air Force, 320 Bombardment Group, 444th Squadron out of Dijon, France. After returning from the war, he attended the University of Colorado where he received a bachelor’s degree in business and was a member of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternal Organization. This generation is often referred to as the greatest generation due to their relentless desire to serve their country and provide for their families, and Dwight is a great example of this. In recognition of his service Dwight received many honors including Northern Colorado Veterans of Foreign Wars Statue, Air Medal with Two Oakley Cluster, European African Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, American Service Medal, Distinguished Unit Badge, and the World War II Victory Medal.

During the time of Dwight's service, he was also obtaining an understanding and passion for the automobile industry. Dwight started in the automobile business while in high school, working part-time for Chol-Ghent Motors, a used car lot located at 354 Walnut in Ft. Collins where the Elizabeth Hotel is currently located. After his service and upon graduating from college, he became a salesman with the firm, working his way up to president. The company was renamed to The Ghent Motor Company in 1945 and continued to operate for a total of 52 years, 26 of which were at 205 North College Avenue where Beau Jo’s is presently located. On October 27, 1966, the dealership was relocated to 2601 South College Avenue where the facilities were boasted about having been “designed not only for interior and exterior beauty, but to provide the ultimate in automotive service.” He also operated the Top Hat car wash and gas station at that site. With these facilities, Dwight started a trend that would change the Fort Collins automotive landscape for decades to come with larger facilities and a move to the south.

Among his many professional accomplishments, Dwight was a director of First National Bank in Ft. Collins from 1967 to 1987 and immediate past trustee of Colorado Outward Bound. He served as president of the Fort Collins Lions Club, chairman of The United Way, director of the Fort Collins Chamber of Commerce and the Industrial Fund, and a member of the Elks Club and American Legion. In 1965 he received the Lions Club Key Member Award, one of the highest awards given by the International Association of Lions Clubs. He was secretary, treasurer, vice president and president of the Colorado Automobile Dealers Association (CADA) from 1966 to 1971, as well as a member of the National Automobile Dealers Association for 32 years and president of the Fort Collins Automobile Dealers Association. While president of CADA he was instrumental in passing legislation to license all automobile dealers and salesman to better serve the public. He was also very involved in his community as a member and director of the Fort Collins Country Club, supporter of the Fort Collins Ducks Unlimited Chapter and a member of the Fort Collins Tennis Club. As a student of both CU and CSU he continued to support the universities by donating vehicles to the Buff Club and Rams Club. Among his many accolades, his highest professional honor came in 1980 when he received the Time Magazine National Automobile Quality Dealer of the Year for the State of Colorado. This award is given to car dealers for exceptional performance in their dealerships, combined with distinguished community service.

Dwight not only ran a successful business but was a diligent husband and father. He had four exceptional sons: Gregory Louis, Bradley Frank (Karen), Richard Irwin (Karen), and Robert Douglas (Ann) with his then wife Amy Ghent. In 1973 after marrying Connie, he gained a remarkable bonus family: Lee Ann Peck-Coca (Joe), Jeffrey Peck, and Megan LaForest (Steve). Dwight was also blessed with 14 grandchildren, and 14 great grandchildren who will carry on his legacy forever.

Dwight’s family was always first and foremost in his life. He was incredibly proud of his kids and grandkids and embraced each and every one for their individual accomplishments. His annual themed birthday parties brought everyone together and have left all of us with great memories.

Dwight packed so much life into his 97 years. He was an avid fisherman, duck hunter, occasional golfer, tennis player, skier, and gin player, not all of which he would admit he excelled in, but enjoyed immensely, along with his family and friends. He loved traveling up rivers and down the mountains of this great country. Traveling with him was always an experience because the “road less taken” was the one he always took. Dwight’s path in life established him as an exemplary human being: a great family man, an acute businessman, and a respected community leader. He stayed true to his values of personal responsibility, duty, honor and faith. He was an all-around good guy who always had a smile on his face and a good joke in his pocket.

He was a kind and generous man, a man of true integrity, someone who was always there when you needed him and who will be sorely missed by all those who loved him. In his later years he never ended a conversation without his three favorite words - “I love you.”

Dwight was preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Vera Ghent, his sister and brother in-law, Rosella and Hi Webster, and his brother and sister in-law Eldon and Kay Ghent.

Visitation will be from 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. Thursday, January 23, 2020 at Allnutt Funeral Service.

A celebration of Dwight’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, January 24, 2020 at Allnutt Funeral Service, 650 West Drake Road, Fort Collins, CO. After a graveside burial, a reception will be held at Allnutt Funeral Service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to The Boys and Girls Club of Larimer County or United Way of Larimer County, in care of Allnutt Funeral Service, 650 West Drake Road, Fort Collins, CO 80526.

  • DONATIONS

  • The Boys and Girls Club of Larimer County
  • United Way of Larimer County

Services

  • Visitation Thursday, January 23, 2020
  • Funeral Service Friday, January 24, 2020
  • Graveside Service Friday, January 24, 2020
  • Reception Following Graveside Service Friday, January 24, 2020

Memories

Dwight Louis Ghent

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Chris Barr

January 29, 2020

I met with Mr. Ghent several times over the last ten years and he was always a happy, humble and polite gentleman. I wish I would have known more about his past so I could have learned more about his amazing experiences. It's very sad to see this generation pass as they were quite remarkable.

Best to Mr. Ghent and his family.

Karla Younessi

January 24, 2020

My husband and I were fortunate enough to have Dwight and Connie as our neighbors in Timnath. They are both the kindest and most welcoming people. We enjoyed seeing Dwight with his sweet labrador and just appreciated his presence. He also invited my dad, another Fort Collins High graduate, in for a chat and a drink when he was checking on our home in our absence. Very nice gentleman with a great smile.

Theresa Morris Myers

January 24, 2020

I have known the Ghent family since I was young. My Mom, Lilalee Morris, went to school with Dwight and Amy and our families shared a lot of good times together. I especially remember the fun we had going water skiing at Horsetooth. Dwight had such a great sense of humor and a great laugh and I will miss him. He had come by my work some years back to show me the fish he had caught. My Mom had hoped to come to the service but she has been having some health issues. She was looking forward to seeing Greg, Brad, Rick and Bob as she hadn't seen them in years (neither have I). Dwight will be missed but I know he is probably at his favorite fishing spot catching huge fish. Love to the family. Theresa Morris Myers

Jim Burrill

January 23, 2020

We are saddened at Dwight's passing. Our families have been friends for many years and I send our condolences to all of the Ghent family on Dwight's passing.

Linda K Saathoff

January 22, 2020

My Condolence to the Ghent Family.

To: Bob Ghent & Family,
I am so sorry to hear about Your Dear Father, Dwight.
I am sure He is so Proud of You and the Rest of His Family as all of You Excelled in the Ghent Motor Company Legacy.
May He Rest In Peace.
God Bless All Of You,

Linda (Tossie) Saathoff

Judy (Wells) Guber

January 22, 2020

Such a wonderful man with a great laugh! I have so many fond memories from our time together on Sheely Dr. and at the Country Club. Heaven has received a gift in welcoming him home. Comfort and blessings to the family.

Scott Townsend

January 22, 2020

A fine man, and fitting memory. It has been a privilege to know Dwight and his family for many years. His smile and laugh were infectious.

Craig Schares

January 21, 2020

Craig Schares

January 21, 2020

Loved the times he would come out and go goose hunting at Grandpa Websters plantation with me, wished I could do it one more time.

Tony & Janet Seahorn

January 21, 2020

Dwight & Connie were our friends and neighbors at Terry Lake. We will always cherish their friendship and the special welcome extended to us when we moved to Fort Collins.
Dwight loved the outdoors and the memories shared while fishing and bird hunting will not be forgotten. His generosity to so many was well beyond the norm. He truly made a difference.
Blessings.
-Tony & Janet Seahorn