Statement of James A. Baker, III, honorary chair of the Baker Institute:
Susan and I are deeply saddened to lose a beloved friend who was a passionate voice for volunteerism and the view that everyone should believe in something larger than self. Barbara Bush challenged each of us to build a better world by empowering people through literacy. As only one of two women in American history who can be called First Lady and First Mother, she was matriarch of a family that remains as dedicated to public service as it was to politics. We Americans were fortunate to have had Barbara and George Bush as one of the best First Couples of all time. We send our deepest love and affection to President Bush and to his entire family.