Former Legislator Gene Ready Dies at 74

Gene ReadyLakeland native Gene Ready, a former member of the House of Representatives and more recently national president of Seminole Boosters Inc., has died. He was 74. Funeral services are 11 a.m. Saturday at Heath Funeral Chapel, according to a listing on the funeral home’s website.

Ready, a real estate and construction professional, served in the House as a Democrat from 1977 to 1984, and was recognized by business, development and medical groups for his support of their legislative priorities.

He was a lifelong booster of Florida State University athletics, having lettered in baseball there (after serving as captain of the Lakeland High School football and baseball teams.)

He and his wife, Barbara, married in college and both graduated from FSU in 1964, according to a 2013 article in The Ledger about his election as head of the national Seminoles booster organization for 2013-2014.

After his legislative service, Ready founded Ready Capital Group, which specialized in finding local property for national home builders, according to a nomination for a Golden Garland Award. More recently, he represented banks in marketing foreclosed properties.

He was also a member of the Polk County Planning Commission.