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Turlock restaurant remembers Barbara Bush
latifs barbara bush pic1
Latifs Restaurant pays tribute to former First Lady Barbara Bush with flowers and a photo display in front of the lunch counter seat dedicated to her visit to Turlock in 1988. - photo by KRISTINA HACKER/The Journal

While the nation mourned the passing of Barbara Bush this week, a Turlock restaurant had its own special tribute to the snowy-haired first lady.

Latif’s Restaurant on Golden State Boulevard in downtown Turlock has always been proud of the day in 1988 when President George H.W. Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush made a campaign trail stop at the diner. The Bushes were traveling with their son Jeb Bush, martial artist and actor Chuck Norris, members of The Beach Boys group and California Governor Duke Deukmejian.

There are a number of photos that commemorate the visit on display behind the cash register and plaques adorn the lunch counter seats where the President and First Lady sat.

Upon hearing of the passing of the wife of the nation's 41st president and mother of the 43rd, Latif’s owner Robert Stevens put a bouquet of flowers and photo on the counter in front of Barbara Bush’s seat.

Robert’s father Jim Stevens remembers well the day the Bushes came to Turlock.

“She was a good person when she was here,” said Jim Stevens, who recalled the President’s Secret Service agents surrounding the downtown eatery and the crowd of onlookers peeking in through the windows.

“We get a lot of comments from people coming in and seeing the pictures there,” said he said.