Former First Lady Barbara Bush died April 17 in her Houston, Texas home less than two months from her 93rd birthday. It was reported over the weekend that the First Lady was gravely ill and had chosen not to seek further medical treatment. It is being reported that Bush suffered from COPD and congestive heart disease.
A 16 year old Barbara met George Bush at a Christmas dance in 1941. They were engaged less than two years later, just before a 19 year old George left to serve in the United States Navy during World War II. And when George returned to the U.S. after being shot down in 1945, Barbara married, “the first man I ever kissed.”
As the wife of an oil baron and later a politician, Barbara Bush was a staunch supporter of her husband and children.
As First Lady of the United States, Bush was known for classic style, string of pearls, and being everybody’s grandmother. Each First Lady chooses a cause to promote during their time in the White House. For Barbara Bush it was literacy – a cause she continued to pursue even after leaving the White House with her Barbara Bush Foundation for Literacy.
She was also the AmeriCares ambassador-at-large and served on the board at the May Clinic; along with a number of other charitable endeavours after she and George returned to private life.
Barbara Bush joins Abigail Adams as the only women to be the wife and mother of a U.S. President.
A sports fan, Barbara and husband George have thrown out the first pitch at a Houston Astros game, could be seen keeping score at Astro games, and was a part of the annual coin toss when the Super Bowl was held in Houston in 2017.
She was born Barbara Pierce on June 8, 1925 in New York City and is a distant relative to former U.S. President Franklin Pierce.
The First Lady has appeared on “Sesame Street”, “Kennedy Center Honors”, various documentaries, awards shows, news programs, talk shows, and uncredited roles on “Saved By the Bell”, “Ferris Bueller”, “Under Siege”, and “This Revolution”.
She is survived by her husband of 73 years George Herbert Walker Bush; children George, Neil, Marvin, Dorothy, and Jeb; and 14 grandchildren.
She will be buried on the grounds of the George H. W. Bush presidential library in College Station, Texas next to her daughter Robin who died of leukemia at age three.
feature photo credit: By Bush Presidential Library – George Bush Presidential Library and Museum, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=12369343