Sunday, 16 December, 2018

Former President Bush's body lies in state

Photo of George HW Bush's service dog mourning at his casket pulls the internet's heartstrings Washington to pay respects, bid farewell to George H.W. Bush
Ellis Copeland | 05 December, 2018, 18:46

Facing the nation for the first time as its president, George H.W. Bush vowed to lead with humility, moral principle and a spirit of unity.

The picture was posted on Twitter by Bush family spokesman Jim McGrath, along with the caption: "Mission complete".

Soon after, he reached the height of his political popularity following the liberation of Kuwait, with public approval ratings that are the envy of today's politicians, the USA economy began to sour and voters began to believe that Bush, never a great communicator - something even he acknowledged - was out of touch with ordinary people. Wrote another, "Truly a handsome and heartbreaking moment". Bush's casket will then be transported by motorcade to the presidential library, where he will be buried at the gated family plot near his wife and their daughter Robin, who died of leukemia at age 3.

Sully the dog will be travelling with the casket on the flight from Texas to Washington DC on Monday. CNET sister site CBS News is covering the memorial events live.

The former President, who suffered from a form of Parkinson's disease late in life, had used a wheelchair since 2012.

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"As much as our family is going to miss this dog, we're comforted to know he'll bring the same joy to his new home, Walter Reed, that he brought to 41", the younger Bush wrote.

Ceremonies at the presidential library will include a missing man formation flyover.

Bush is shown with his son George W. Bush, who would later become US president, and wife Barbara Bush in Rye, N.Y., in 1955. USA traders also observed a moment of silence before markets opened on Monday in honor of Bush.

The 41st President will be carried to his final rest wearing socks that pay tribute to his lifetime of service, starting as an 18 year-old naval aviator in war. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump are scheduled to attend. As a true patriot and a visionary, President Bush will forever be viewed by people with disabilities and their families as a hero through his efforts to enact the Americans with Disabilities Act.

"To be honest, at one point in history, ' he said, "it would not have been exceptional to have a president who obeyed and appreciated the norms of the American system and of the presidency, who was civil, who was kind to people and who rose above petty squabbles".

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