Former 41st President George H. W. Bush dies at 94

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By Ida Domingo | idomaingo1@radford.edu

George H.W. Bush, former 41st president of the United States, died on Friday night Nov. 30 at his home in Houston. He was 94.

His passing was announced by his office, which came less than eight months after the passing of his wife of 73 years, Barbara Bush, who died due to a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease on April 17.

Herbert Bush had Parkinson’s disease that resulted in him to be reliant to a wheelchair or motorized scooter in recent years. After the passing of his wife, he had been in and out of the hospital as his health declined.

Reported by The New York Times, Bush spoke his final words in a phone call with his son, the former 43rd President George W. Bush. In their final conversation through the speakerphone, his son told Bush that he had been a ” wonderful father” to him and his father replied with his final words, “I love you, too.”

Before this phone conversation, Herbert Bush was asked if whether or not he wanted to go to the hospital and his answer was no. Instead, he said he was ready to be with Barbara, and their late daughter Robin, who died of leukemia.

Many former U.S. presidents and colleagues took to social media to share their condolences and reactions to his passing.

Former President George H. W. Bush’s service dog, Sully, lies in front of his casket in Houston on Sunday.

Former President Barack Obama said, “America has lost a patriot and humble servant in George Herbert Walker Bush. While our hearts are heavy today, they are also filled with gratitude. Our thoughts are with the entire Bush family tonight – and all who were inspired by George and Barbara’s example.”

“He never stopped serving,” said former President Bill Clinton. He adds, “I am profoundly grateful for every minute I spent with President Bush and will always hold our friendship as one of my life’s greatest gifts.”

Former President Jimmy Carter said the Republican’s administration “was marked by grace, civility and social conscience.” and that Bush embraced “a uniquely American volunteer spirit.”

James Baker III, former secretary of state and White House chief of staff under Bush, said in a statement that Bush lead in “strength, integrity, compassion and humility” on the global stage and in everyday interactions. “His passion was a deep love of family and country.”

The current president, Donald Trump also offered his condolences saying in a statement, “Through his essential authenticity, disarming wit, and unwavering commitment to faith, family, and country, President Bush inspired generations of his fellow Americans to public service to be, in his words, ‘a thousand points of light’ illuminating the greatness, hope, and opportunity of America to the world.”

President Trump also designated Dec. 5 as a national day of mourning, also in which Bush will be eulogized by his son, former President George W. Bush, along with family and friends on Wednesday at the Washington National Cathedral.

His funeral will be held at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church. After, Herbert Bush will be buried in a family plot behind the Bush library complex, alongside his wife and former First Lady and his daughter Robin.

Photo Credit: (Sully H. W. Bush’s Instagram; C-Span)