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Saluting President George H.W. Bush: Darcy cartoon

December 5, 2018

Saluting President George H.W. Bush: Darcy cartoon

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- This morning the national memorial service will be held for former President George H. W. Bush 1924-2018.  That little dash represents a life filled with historical accomplishments, a legacy of great dignity, a thousand points of light.

President Bush went from being one of the youngest U.S. Navy aviators in World War ii to being the longest lived president in U.S. history, and along with his son, President George W. Bush, only the second father and son to both hold the nation’s highest office, along with John and John Quincy Adams.

In between serving in WWII at 18, and in The Oval Office, George H.W. Bush served his nation as Ambassador to the United Nations, Chief of the China Liaison Office, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency and Vice President under President Ronald Reagan.   He also served his party as  chairman of the Republican National Committee. Was there any other president who had a better resume of qualifications upon being elected?

Before entering politics, Bush had become a millionaire by age 40 after starting an oil company in Texas upon his graduation from Yale University. 

However it’s likely Bush’s proudest accomplishment would be having the longest marriage in presidential history to Barbara Bush.

Bush married Barbara Pierce in 1945.  When the former First Lady passed away, the Bush’s had been married 73 years.  In 2000, they surpassed John and Abigail Adams as the longest married presidential couple.

The cherished marriage produced six children.   The Bush’s second child Robin died in childhood.  George W. went on to become Governor of Texas and President of the United States.  Jeb Bush became Governor of Florida and a presidential candidate.

During his presidency, Bush oversaw the fall of the Berlin wall, the unification of Berlin and Germany’s re-entry into NATO.  He directed the successful Persian Gulf War.  “Read my lips” and “A thousand points of light” make the book of famous presidential quotes.    But with his passing, President Bush is being most remembered for the decorum, dignity, class and civility he showed in his presidency and post presidency.

Despite losing his re-election bid to Bill Clinton, Bush united with his former political rival to work on humanitarian causes in their post-presidency.

Even in death, President Bush continues to lead, setting the example for civility by making sure President Trump was invited to his funeral and not disparaged in eulogies, despite Trump’s vicious disparagement of Jeb Bush and the former president’s “Thousand points of light” quote.    

Bush’s legacy of kindness was on full display as his body lie in state in the Capitol rotunda.  Yesterday, the Bush family warmly greeted and embraced members of the public who had come to pay their respects.     

You would never know Bush was a one term president judging from the thousands of people who waited in lines that stretched outside the U.S. Capitol, to pay their respects to the late president.

If it were possible, there is little doubt the American public would like to have him serving a second term in 2018.

The other day, President George H.W. Bush’s spokesman posted a photo of the president’s service dog “Sully” laying in front of his flag draped casket, and captioned it “Mission Accomplished” Sully. 

It’s not surprising the photo of Sully and the president went viral.  It was “mission accomplished not only for Sully the service dog, but mission accomplished by George H.W. Bush, the blue-blood turned dedicated public servant.  As his son, President George W. said “job well done.”

Yesterday, former U.S. Senator Bob Dole, whose arm and hand were permanently disabled in WWII, was given assistance to rise from his wheelchair so he could stand to salute his one time political rival, President George H.W. Bush as he lie in state.

I join Senator Dole and the rest of the nation in saluting George H.W. Bush for his service to the nation and example he set as an office holder, husband and father.

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