Bush’s funeral train to College Station

by Dwayne Torres December 7, 2018, 0:40
Bush’s funeral train to College Station

President George W. Bush sits at his desk in the Oval Office for the first time on Inaugural Day, in this January 20, 2001 file photo, as his father, former President George H.W. Bush looks on.

It was his first North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meeting in 1989, and as a parade of world leaders took turns at the podium, newly elected US president George H.W. Bush was taking a lot of notes. The night before, more than 11,000 people paid their respects as his casket lay in repose all night at St. Martin's Episcopal Church, where his family worshipped.

Jeb Bush's daughter Noelle joined three of her cousins for a reading at George H.W. Bush's Texas funeral.

Bush "was America's last great soldier statesman", presidential historian Jon Meacham told the guests. Next to them were Bill and Hillary Clinton, Trump's 2016 campaign rival, who stared straight ahead, stone-faced. Prince Charles, Barack and Michelle Obama, President Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton were just a few of the people who attended the service.

Trump tweeted Wednesday that the day marked "a celebration for a great man who has led a long and distinguished life".

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"I said, "Dad, I love you and you've been a wonderful father, '" Bush recalled as he delivered his eulogy Wednesday at the Washington National Cathedral".

The group had been friends with Bush since they played at a White House barbecue when Bush was vice president.

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Tens of thousands of Americans quietly filed in to the Capitol to pay their respects to a man who steered the nation through turbulent times including the end of the Cold War - and in a style dramatically different from the bombast and combativeness championed by the current commander-in-chief.

When he sat down, he reached over and shook the hands of the Obamas.

George H.W. Bush, a Republican who served as president from 1989 to 1993, died on December 1 at age 94. "In addition to being our president, he was also one of our brothers, flying combat missions off aircraft carriers during World War II", said Rear Adm. Roy Kelley, commander of Naval Air Force Atlantic.

"That's why he's president and I'm not", Lemon said of Obama's willingness to shake Trump's hand.

Most federal government offices will be closed on Wednesday as many federal workers will get the day off.

Bush's casket returned for the services in Houston, a ride on a special funeral train and eventual burial at his family plot on the presidential library grounds at Texas A&M University in College Station. Flags on public buildings are flying at half-staff for 30 days.

"Even someone as modest as me", he said, pausing for a cascade of knowing laughter, "threw in a few more adjectives here and there, to extend the pleasure of the experience". Barbara Bush passed away in April at age 92.

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