Remembering Barbara Bush in Southwest Florida

The former First Lady hosted the annual Celebration of Reading, which funded literacy programs.

BY April 18, 2018


Barbara Bush, the former First Lady who became a champion of reading and literacy, died Tuesday at age 92 in Houston. The matriarch of the family that included two presidents and a Florida governor had strong ties to the Gulfshore. Boca Grande was a frequent vacation destination, and Barbara would often play a round on the Gasparilla Inn golf course. Perhaps her biggest impact in Southwest Florida was the annual Celebration of Reading. Since 2001, the event has brought best-selling authors to the area to help raise money (more than $26 million so far) for the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy

Here, Southwest Floridians remember the former First Lady. We’ll be updating as more remembrances come in. 



Honoring the memory of Barbara Bush…one of the first to invest in our Bright Beginnings program and to empower us and our families. She was an amazing wife, mother, and woman who has been an inspiration to so many.

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