Jenna Louise Hawkins Welch (born July 24, 1919, in Little Rock, Arkansas) is the mother of First Lady Laura Bush. She is the daughter of Halsey Sinclair Hawkins (1894-1982) and Jessie Laura Sherrard (1898-1981). She grew up in El Paso, Texas. She married the late Harold Welch on January 29, 1944, and their only child, Laura Lane Welch (Bush), was born on November 4, 1946. Her granddaughter, Jenna Welch Bush, was named after her.
Jenna worked as bookkeeper of Harold's home building company from their residence in Midland, Texas.
Harold died on April 29, 1995 of Alzheimer's disease in Midland, Texas, at the age of eighty-two, where Jenna Welch still resides.
Breast cancer patient
Hawkins was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1997 at the age of 78. She had surgery and has been cancer-free since. Her daughter, Laura Bush, has become a breast cancer activist in honor of her mother.