Publix heiress Carol Jenkins Barnett dies at 65

Publix heiress, Carol Jenkins Barnett, dies of early-onset Alzheimer's disease (Courtesy: Publix)

LAKELAND, Fla. – Carol Jenkins Barnett, former president of Publix Supermarkets, has died. She was diagnosed with younger-onset Alzheimer’s disease in 2016 and passed away at her home surrounded by her family on Tuesday evening. She was 65.

Jenkins Barnett was the daughter of Publix Super Market founder George W. Jenkins. She was born and raised in Lakeland, Florida and began her career with Publix in 1972 as a cashier.

In 1983, she was elected to the Publix board of directors, where she served for more than three decades.

“The Publix family is deeply saddened by the loss of a great humanitarian and community advocate,” said Publix CEO Todd Jones. “In addition to her service at Publix, Carol Jenkins Barnett made significant contributions to many nonprofit organizations and for the betterment of all children with investments in early childhood education programs. She will be sorely missed by her family, our associates and the community. Carol had a generous heart and compassionate soul. Her efforts will continue to improve the lives of others for generations.”

A memorial service will be held at First United Methodist Church in Lakeland, Saturday, Dec. 11, at 11 a.m.


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Veronica Crespo writes for Local10.com and also oversees the Español section of the website. Born and raised in Miami, she graduated from the University of Miami, where she studied broadcast journalism and Spanish.