On 1989, George HW Bush, Vice-President under Ronald Reagan, took the oath of office himself as the 41st President of the United States. In his term of office he saw the collapse of Communism in the reunification of Germany and the end of the Soviet Union. He also saw the deposition of Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega and the liberation of Kuwait from Iraqi invasion during Operation Desert Storm. Despite his successes he was beaten by William Clinton in the 1993 Election, but remained fondly remembered as a successful President. His death last Friday, aged 94, was mourned the world over.
USA Today reports that on Saturday, December 1, following the passing of George HW Bush the day before on November 30, an official schedule was released by the Joint Force Headquarters – National Capital Region, outlining the entire period of the State Funeral for the former US President. It is divided into three stages, happening over a similar number of days starting this Monday, December 3. The first stage begins with the early-morning flight of the former President’s remains from Houston, Texas to Washington, DC. Upon arrival at Joint Base Andrews, the remains will be transported to the Capitol where, after a short service, it will lie in state two days.
The second stage of Bush’s state funeral, which involves lying in state at the Capitol with a Guard of Honor from December 3 to Wednesday, December 5, will conclude with the remains being moved to the Washington National Cathedral for the capital funeral mass. Afterwards it will return to Andrews for a flight back to Ellington Base in Houston, for stage three. Upon arrival the former President will lie in repose at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church until another funeral mass at that place on the morning of Thursday, December 6.
On his final journey, the former president will be transported to College Station, Texas where his Presidential Library is located. He will arrive Thursday afternoon, where he will be interred on the Library grounds next to his wife, former First Lady Barbara Bush who passed away seven months earlier in April, and their daughter Robin Bush, who died of leukemia on 1953 at age three.
Former President Bush died at his home in Houston, surrounded by family members. His last recorded words were “I love you too”, said over speakerphone to his son and fellow former President, George W. Bush.
George HW Bush is now the current record-holder for the longest-lived US President. He and his son George W. Bush together also make the second father-son tandem to reside in the White House after John Adams and John Quincy Adams.
Image courtesy of Sky News