HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (WAVY) — Former President George H.W. Bush died Friday at the age of 94. On Saturday, statements were released by those who knew him, sharing the fond memories and respect they had for the 41st president’s life and legacy.
President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump:
“Melania and I join with a grieving Nation to mourn the loss of former President George H.W. Bush, who passed away last night. 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 hin his words, ‘a thousand points of light’ illuminating greatness, hope, and opportunity of American to the world. ”
Senator Tim Kaine:
“President Bush stands as a model of dignity in public service. Whether flying 58 combat missions in World War II, signing the Americans with Disabilities Act, or bringing the Cold War to a peaceful end, he carried his accomplishments with unparalleled humility. He lived a long life devoted to his country, dying old and full of days. I am saddened by his passing, and my condolences go out to the Bush family.”
Former President George W. Bush:
“Jeb, Neil, Marvin, Doro, and I are saddened to announce that after 94 remarkable years, our dear dad has died,” the statement from H.W. Bush’s son and fellow former president read. “George H.W. Bush was a man of the highest character and the best dad a son or daughter could ask for. 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.”
Gov. of Virginia Ralph Northam
“President George H.W. Bush led a remarkable life, marked by his devotion to his beloved wife Barbara, commitment to public service, and unwavering decency to others. May we all take a page from his book. Pam and I extend our thoughts to the Bush family during this time of loss.”
The Dalai Lama:
“He was in fact the first American President that I was privileged to meet. I recall being deeply touched by your father’s concern for the Tibetan people and the situation in Tibet. It is truly admirable to have lived over 94 years. While nothing can replace the loss of a father, we can rejoice in the fact that his was a meaningful life, dedicated to public service. I commend your parents for encouraging their children, including you my dear friend, to devote yourselves to the service of others.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders:
“The President and First Lady were notified late last night of President George H.W. Bush’s passing. President Trump is scheduled to speak with President George W. Bush this morning and offer his condolences on behalf of himself, the First Lady, and the entire country. A state funeral is being arranged with all of the accompanying support and honors. The President will designate Wednesday, December 5th as a National Day Of Mourning. He and the First Lady will attend the funeral at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.”
Former Soviet premier Mikhail Gorbachev:
“I have a lot of memories associated with this person,” Gorbachev said of Bush, with whom he worked closely in the late 1980s and 1990s. “We had a chance to work together during the years of tremendous changes. It was a dramatic time that demanded great responsibility from everyone. The result was an end to the Cold War and the nuclear arms race. I pay tribute to the contribution of George H. W. Bush to this historic achievement. He was a real partner.”
Congressman A. Donald McEachin (VA-04):
“Last night we lost an American who respected the trust the country bestowed in him to lead… President Bush was a true American patriot and gentleman. Whether I agreed or disagreed with any specific policies, President Bush always governed by principle, trying to do what he believed to be best for our country and supporting and upholding the Constitution… Rest in peace, President Bush, you were a true patriot and a role model as a public servant.”
Former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama:
“America has lost a patriot and humble servant in George Herbert Walker Bush,” the statement from the Obamas said. “While our hearts are heavy today, they are also filled with gratitude. Not merely for the years he spent as our forty-first President, but for the more than 70 years he spent in devoted service to the country he loved – from a decorated Naval aviator who nearly gave his life in World War II, to Commander-in-Chief of our Armed Forces, with plenty of posts along the way. Ambassador to the United Nations. Director of Central Intelligence. U.S. Envoy to China. Vice President of the United States.”
Vice President Mike Pence and Second Lady Karen Pence:
“Karen and I were saddened to learn of the passing of President George H.W. Bush and we send our deepest sympathies to the entire Bush family. President Bush loved his family, loved this country and his legacy will be a lifetime of service to the United States of America. Beginning with his service as a Naval Aviator in WWII, where he flew 58 combat missions and was shot down over the Pacific, George H. W. Bush always answered the call to serve America. His years in Congress, as a diplomat, CIA Director and Vice President of the United States were characterized by modesty, integrity, and patriotism. His years as the 41st President of the United States left America and the world more peaceful, prosperous and secure. During this difficult time, we send our prayers and deepest condolences to the entire Bush family. We join them and the American people in mourning the passing of this good and great man. His example will always inspire and his lifetime of service will be enshrined in the hearts of the American people forever. God Bless President George H.W. Bush.”
Former President Bill Clinton and Presidential candidate Hilary Clinton
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.
I will be forever grateful for the friendship we formed. From the moment I met him as a young governor invited to his home in Kennebunkport, I was struck by the kindness he showed to Chelsea, by his innate and genuine decency, and by his devotion to Barbara, his children, and their growing brood.
Few Americans have been—or will ever be—able to match President Bush’s record of service to the United States and the joy he took every day from it; from his military service in World War II, to his work in Congress, the United Nations, China, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Vice Presidency and the Presidency, where he worked to move the post Cold War world toward greater unity, peace, and freedom.
He never stopped serving. I saw it up close, working with him on tsunami relief in Asia and here at home after Hurricane Katrina. His remarkable leadership and great heart were always on full display.
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.
Our hearts and prayers are with George, Jeb, Neil, Marvin, Doro, their families, and the entire Bush clan.
Representative Nancy Pelosi:
“George H.W. Bush’s life was defined by an inspiring commitment to public service. I am deeply grateful to his family for having shared such a wonderful man with us all. May it be a comfort to them to know that so many Americans mourn with them.”
Former Secretary of State James A. Baker the 3rd
“The legacy of George H.W. Bush will be forever etched in the history of America and the world,” he said in a statement, adding: “It was my pleasure and great joy to have had him as my special friend for more than 60 years.”
Former Gov. of California Arnold Schwarzenegger:
Today, we’ve lost a great hero. George Bush was an inspiration to all Americans and we will miss him dearly. From the day he first put on his U.S. Navy flight suit and took off into the unknown, he always put his country first… He’s flying into the arms of the love of his life, Barbara. This evening, each of us should take a minute to look up and offer him a silent thanks.