Laura Bush is the previous First Lady of the United States and the wife of US President George W. Bush. She and the President have twin daughters, Jenna and Barbara. Prior to becoming First Lady of the Nation, she served as First Lady of Texas.
Laura Bush was born on November 4, 1946, in Midland, Texas. Her parents were Harold and Jenna Welch. She attended Southern Methodist University, and received a bachelor's degree in education, later receiving a master's degree in library science at the University of Texas at Austin. She was also a public school teacher and librarian and has since set up a national reading program called America's Children Read Books and has been active in anti-smoking campaigns.
She met her husband in 1977 and married him that same year.
Together with the Library of Congress, Laura Bush launched the first National Book Festival in Washington, D.C., in September 2001. The 2004 National Book Festival drew 85,000 book-lovers from across the nation. Also included in Mrs. Bush's projects are support for education campaigns for breast cancer and heart disease. She also helped to start Preserve America, a national initiative to protect our cultural and natural heritage.
1963 Car Accident
In 1963 Laura Bush, then known as Laura Welch and only 17 years old at the time, was driving her Chevrolet sedan on a clear night shortly after 8 p.m. on Nov. 6, 1963. She ran a stop sign at an intersection and struck a Corvair sedan driven by 17 year old Michael Douglas. Douglas was killed. This is recorded in a two-page accident report released by the city of Midland, Texas. No charges were filed. Although Mrs. Bush has historically blamed for the accident, recent scholarship has suggested that there may have been little she could do to avoid it. Douglas was driving a first generation Chevrolet Corvair, notorious for its unpredictable handling at high speeds. The possibility that Douglas lost control of the vehicle can not be discounted. Mrs. Bush was emotionally very hurt by this event, but through her faith she has worked for forgiveness without simply trying to avoid being blamed.
Laura Bush hosts a press preview of the White House Spring Garden Tour
in the Jacqueline Kennedy Garden Friday morning, April 16, 2004.