Former President Barack Obama took time to honor Geoge H. W. Bush. He and his wife, Michelle, called the elder Bush a patriot and humble servant” with “a legacy of service that may never be matched, even though he’d want all of us to try.”

It was a genuine response, tailored to the Obamas’ lives. It was fitting that the couple also mentioned Bush’s wife, Barbara. The two were married for 73 years before she died in April.

“After seventy-three years of marriage, George and Barbara Bush are together again now, two points of light that never dimmed, two points of light that ignited countless others with their example – the example of a man who, even after commanding the world’s mightiest military, once said ‘I got more of a kick out of being one of the founders of the YMCA in Midland, Texas back in 1952 than almost anything I’ve done.”

In the statement, which came shortly after the Bush family announce H.W.’s death, they 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.”


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The Obama’s also added that “his life is a testament to the notion that public service is a noble, joyous calling. And he did tremendous good along the journey.”

The Bush family announce the 41st president’s death in a statement on Friday. A state funeral is currently being arraigned and President Donald Trump has designated Wednesday as a national day of mourning.

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