Patriot and humble servant: Rivals and proteges remember president Bush

“The legacy of George H.W. Bush will be forever etched in the history of America and the world."

December 1, 2018 11:13
2 minute read.
Patriot and humble servant: Rivals and proteges remember president Bush

US President Barack Obama is introduced to speak by former President George H.W. Bush at the Points of Light forum at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas October 16, 2009. (photo credit: KEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS)


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George H.W. Bush, the 41st president of the United States who died late Friday at the age of 94, was mourned and remembered by leaders from across the American political spectrum.

“After 94 remarkable years, our dear Dad has died,” George W. Bush, his son and successor in the White House as the 43rd president, said in a statement on behalf of his siblings. "The entire Bush family is deeply grateful for 41's life and love, for the compassion of those who have cared and prayed for Dad, and for the condolences of our friends and fellow citizens."

President Donald Trump, whom Bush pointedly did not support in the bitter 2016 campaign, and First Lady Melania Trump praised the former president in an official White House statement.

“With sound judgment, common sense, and unflappable leadership, President Bush guided our nation, and the world, to a peaceful and victorious conclusion of the Cold War,” Trump said. “As president, he set the stage for the decades of prosperity that have followed. And through all that he accomplished, he remained humble, following the quiet call to service that gave him a clear sense of direction.”

Bill Clinton, who beat Bush in the 1992 presidential race, after successfully portraying his rival as out of touch with the concerns of everyday Americans, recalled their close post-presidential friendship.

"Hillary and I mourn the passing of President George H.W. Bush, and give thanks for his great long life of service, love and friendship," Clinton wrote. "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 Barack Obama mourned Bush's passing in similar terms.

"America has lost a patriot and humble servant in George Herbert Walker Bush," Obama wrote. Bush's "life is a testament to the notion that public service is a noble, joyous calling."

James A. Baker III, Bush's secretary of State and a close adviser, expressed his appreciation of the former president's contribution and legacy.

“The legacy of George H.W. Bush will be forever etched in the history of America and the world,” Baker's statement said, according to the New York Times. “It was my pleasure and great joy to have had him as my special friend for more than 60 years.”

Beto O'Rourke, the Texas Democratic Congressman and former US Senate candidate, mourned the passing of former president George H.W. Bush in a statement on Twitter Saturday.

"George H.W. Bush will be missed and long remembered for his leadership, his decency & his essential kindness," O'Rourke wrote. "Served his country in so many ways. Made public service about country, and America’s responsibility in the world, less about party. Our thoughts are with the Bush family."

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