Frank Sinatra’s widow, Barbara, passed away on Tuesday at the age of 90. The fourth and last wife of the legendary singer died at her Rancho Mirage home in California, following months of declining health, according to a spokesperson for one of her charity foundations, the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center Foundation.
The former model died nearly 20 years after Frank Sinatra died of a heart attack at the age of 82.
According to the Desert Sun, which first reported the news of Barbara’s death, the spokesperson for the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center Foundation said she died peacefully surrounded by family and friends.
“She died comfortably surrounded by family and friends at her home.”
Barbara married Frank Sinatra in 1976, and their marriage, which lasted 22 years before Frank died of a heart attack in 1998, was the longest of Sinatra’s four marriages, TMZ reported.
Barbara was born in Bosworth, Missouri, in 1927. She left Bosworth for California in her late teens after she was accepted to the Robert Edward School of Professional Modeling. She lived with her mother in Long Beach while attending the modeling school.
She had a successful modeling career after she graduated from the school. She was accepted by the prestigious modeling agency, Ford, and secured modeling jobs with top fashion magazines, such as Vogue, according to the Daily Mail.
Barbara’s marriage to Sinatra in 1976 was her third marriage. She had married Robert Harrison Oliver, a singer, and had her son Robert with him. Her first marriage collapsed when she was caught having an affair with Zeppo Marx, an actor and comedian. She married Marx in 1959, but their marriage collapsed in 1973 when she had an affair with Sinatra.
Barbara first met Frank Sinatra when she moved to Rancho Mirage, California, with Zeppo Marx. She began having an affair with Sinatra despite being married to Marx. Zeppo divorced her when the media reported the affair. She married Sinatra three years later in 1976.
Barbara became involved in supporting and raising funds for a number of charitable projects after she married Sinatra. She was able to successfully leverage her fame as Sinatra’s wife to raise funds and rally support for several charitable causes.
She started a number of charitable organizations of her own, including the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center Foundation at the Eisenhower Medical Center. The organization, founded in 1986, advocates for and provides counseling to victims of child abuse.
[Featured Image by José Luis Magana/AP Images]