Barbara Sinatra, a longtime Coachella Valley resident, philanthropist, and the widow of Frank Sinatra, has died at the age of 90.
Barbara Marx Sinatra was born Barbara Blakeley in 1927. Mrs. Sinatra was a model and showgirl and came to the Desert with her husband at the time, Zeppo Marx of the Marx brothers.
In 1973, she was living at Tamarisk Country Club with Zeppo, but the Marx’s had a neighbor who had taken a liking to Barbara, that man was Frank Sinatra.
Barbara was the fourth and final wife of old blue eyes. They were married in July 1976 at the estate of Walter and Leonore Annenberg and remained married until his death in 1998.
But, her and Frank’s biggest impact on the valley may well be the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center in Rancho Mirage, which they opened in 1986. The center is on the campus of the Eisenhower Medical Center. The non-profit facility provides individual and group therapy for young victims of physical, sexual, and emotional abuse, and no child has ever been turned away by the center.
She was a vocal supporter of several valley charities and was the host of the Sinatra Celebrity Golf Tournament for more than 20 years. In 1998, a Golden Palm Star on the the Palm Springs Walk of Stars was dedicated to Barbara Sinatra.