tv Shepard Smith Reporting FOX News December 3, 2018 12:00pm-1:00pm PST
what an incredible way to continue his service. i remember back in june he was so excited that that dog was coming to live with him. and certainly made george h.w. bush rest in peace. more now with shep smith. i'm dana perino. ♪ >> shepard: good afternoon, i'm shepard smith. our coverage begins today with george herbert walker bush making his final journey to washington. a live look at joint base andrews where the casket is set to arrive minutes from now, followed by a ceremony which we will bring you live during this newscast. hours ago a send-off in texas from the president's adopted hometown of houston. ♪
at ellington field, artillery fired the salute in that band played a hail to the chief as a military honor guard brought the president's casket from the harvest to the plane. of course that plane normally goes by air force one but the solemn flight has been dubbed special air mission 41. the late president's family is also on this flight including his son, the former president george w. bush along with the former first lady laura bush. here they are getting on that plane. also on board, the former presidents service dog, sully. you may have seen this photo of him lying down by the president's casket at the funeral home in houston. of of course, bush senior was known for his colorful and iconic socks. the last pair he would wear would pay tribute to his
lifetime of service starting as a navy aviator in world war ii. they are gray with navy fighter jets flying in formation. this is just the beginning of a four-day tribute to president bush. his body will lie in state at the capital until wednesday, followed by a state funeral at the national cathedral with president trump, obama, clinton, carter, and bush the 43rd. after that, they will return for a service at his local church in houston before he was laid to rest at a family plot in his presidential library in college station next to his late wife barbara and his daughter robin, who died when she was three years old. ellison barber reporting, live from joint base andrews. >> we just saw a military honor guard walked by the area where we are standing. there are sailors here and we are told there are about 114 of
them. a black hearse with the presidential seal arrived here just a few minutes ago, you can see that on the tarmac just behind me. the it's escorted by three military march units. there are three initial stages when it comes to a state funeral. this is the start of stage two with nearly 4,000 civilian and military personnel from all branches of the armed forces are part of a task force overseeing all of this. and, the commander in chief is deciding to follow some traditions. they are deciding to leave some things out. and, his motorcade passed through the place he called home for so many years.
the historical association says that by planning her own funeral, the president was able to encourage personal touches that could elucidate their character and legacy on a national stage. that's the president's final combination with the nation that they served. >> ellison, thanks. president bush is public service him all over the world. and, that the presidential remain for the flight to washington. >> this joint reserve base is home to the aerotech texas
national guard. and the casket was carried out this morning by current and former members and, then the group. that's a 36-mile journey to ellington field where hundreds of more friends gathered. and as the 77th army band from fort sill alabama played hail to the chief and cannons fired 21 rounds, a joint military honor guard handled that movement of the president's casket to air force one for a special air 41. we heard from the president's son, neil, yesterday, who said
that family was excited to fly aboard air force one to washington. of course there were plenty of sadness amongst all those children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. they consider the next few days a chance to celebrate the life of what they call an amazing man. >> the president's casket is returning to houston on wednesday, right? >> after that funeral at the national cathedral in washington, his cap casket be thrown back here and take into his family's church where he will lie in repose. then there will be another funeral on thursday for his family and for texas friends. and that is on the grounds of the presidential library there. that will happen on thursday morning and thursday afternoon. >> rick leventhal, live with us. let's turn to patrick o'carroll now, he worked with the secret service for 26 years.
during that time he protected not one but four presidents including president bush, the 41st. good afternoon and welcome. >> good afternoon and thanks for this opportunity. >> your time began with mr. bush as vice president, and it's our understanding that in the very early days you got a good sense of who he was. >> the vice president is usually several agents with him, and, we really got to know bush and his family. >> so that then vice president, president bush the 41st. and they are fortunate to be the
driver that drove vice president bush and mrs. bush. and when we allow them to step out of the car for viewing the public. so anyway the agent turned back to the vice president and said, we will be opening up the roof. and at that point vice president bush turned to mrs. bush and said, hey baby, i told you i would take you places. the door opened up and they stepped out to the crowd and it has stayed with me all these years. >> shepard: i do have to interrupt for just a moment as mitch mcconnell is now speaking on the former and late president on the senate floor. >> bush stayed the course. it concluded list of core
principles, and here's what he said. tell the truth. be strong, do your best, and try hard. forgive and stay the course. year after year. post after post. and he helped his country do the same. the fog of war and persian gulf on the international order needed defending. america's commander in chief lead just as steadily as he had in that smoking cockpit almost 50 years earlier. and in between the pacific and the presidency, he steered us straight through countless challenges. the congressman, invested to the
cia director and vice president. serve and capably in just one or two of these posts and that would ensure any americans placed in history. but bush served in all of them. and always with excellence. on the homefront, president bush was a warrior for hope, optimism, and opportunity. as president, you pave the way for education reform and signed legislation to give disabled americans a better shot. overseas, he was a talented diplomat, and powerful champion of our interests. it was on his watch that the cold war finally ended. the free people of europe threw off the shackles of communism. but president bush knew that america not kick up our heels and enjoy a holiday from histor
history. we fought and won the gulf war and order to make something perfectly clear to allies and enemies alike. it had to be right and not mite that filled the void. he set a rule where the role of loss supplies the rule of the jungle and his leadership moved us toward such a world. through global change, domestic turmoil and economic transformation, whether in jobs that he had passionately sought out or in other assignments he dutifully accepted. george bush kept us on course. he wasn't a dramatic or revolutionary leader and he didn't advertise radical change. he never quite seem to home in the spotlight. instead, he offered humility and a servant's heart. he and stomach aspire to govern this country well, preserve what was good and improve things that were possible.
he wanted to keep us flying high and challenge us to have fly a little higher. and he led us as he seemingly did in his life with grace and kindness that seemed almost unbelievable, given all that he has accomplished. a daring aviator, chief spy, wartime president. you'd think this would be a tough and grumpy guy. but it is this means good cheer and spirit that stand out most of all in our national memory. he was a prolific and writer of notes and letters. he freely changed his own plans to make life easier for his staff, or for the secret service detail. i saw recently that some years after his presidency he couldn't even bring himself to simply
turn down a report or request for an interview without crafting a warm apologetic full page letter explaining his rationale. his decency and attentiveness to others was a credit to his upbringing. but it wasn't only have it, it was principal. this is a man who said this in his inaugural address. "in our hearts, we know what matters. we cannot hope to leave our children not only a bigger car, a bigger bank account, we must hope to give them a sense of what it means to be a loyal friend, a loving parent, a citizen who leaves his home, neighborhood and town better than when he found it. looking beyond today's drama, issuing a deep moral challenge, george bush sent set the bar hd his country listen to. because we saw him meet those
standards himself. george bush's gifts were many. but some gifts were greater than others. george bush and barbara pierce met at a christmas party in 1941. he described to her to his mother as the nifty guest girl at the dance. weeks after he returned from the war, they were married. i've climbed to perhaps the highest mountain in the world, he would write much leader, but even that cannot hold a candle to being barbara's husband. their love story would grow to include six children and to span great joys and tragic loss. it whether the challenges of the spotlight. in every chapter, george bush served as comforter and counselor. he cared for loved ones with the dedication that never ceased to amaze them. so much for the myth of the
starched, episcopalian new new englander. george bush was no stoic. in fact he developed his own teary-eyed foundation as what the family member of the bush foundation calls, the b letter a letter wl brigade. his contributions have enriched this country even more. few men so powerful would have even thought to call for a kinder, gentler nation. even fewer could have lived it themselves. his words literally lifted our experience and his example inspired us. a quarter century after george bush left the oval office, his legacy continues to directly inspire
not just a thousand points of life, but millions of volunteers who serve others. so, madam president, in war and peace, in public and in private, in high office and in family moments, reggie bush stay the course. the greatest generation indeed. the grand heroism that saved our nation. the quiet diligence that built it up. and, the basic goodness that sustains it. that's all in one. today, the united states senate joins the nation and the bush family in mourning, and in prayer. we are also joined in gratitude. we are thankful that god gave this country george bush and barbara. thankful that they built such a loving family and thankful that they may now be reunited, their
great love story perfected in the light of his grace. >> shepard: mitch mcconnell on the senate floor on the life of president george h.w. bush. let's return to patrick o'carroll now, he worked with secret service for 26 years and during that time protected for presidents including the 41st president. sir, hearing mitch mcconnell and the remainder of, stay the course, it was a reminder of how he lived every day. >> he was a model for all of us. no matter who you were, he was friendly to you and engaging and he went out of his way to talk to any of the police officers that assisted the agents with him. it was usually enjoyable just to be around them. >> one president reagan was sho
shot, there became an immediate need to get the vice president to the white house. but, he had his own thoughts about how that ought to happen. would you mind recalling that story for us? >> absolutely. what happened is, he was flying back from texas and he called in and said that they would be landing at andrews air force base. normally, a marine to would pick him up and fly him to the vice president's residence. in this case they offered to take him to the white house. then they made arrangements to drop him on the national mall, where we had a motorcade ready of metropolitan police and park police, and secret service. then we took him to the white house. >> that must have been a very heady day. >> it was extremely. all day long we were calling in
the reports from the hospital with president reagan, and to air force too, as he was coming back. everyone was nervous and upset by the day, and he was extremely happy when he finally got back to washington and arrived at the white house. >> this is a president who has known stress like most never will, and that will be another in a long line of stressful days where members of the secret service were able to observe him and learn from him on those days. what was he like on the most stressful of occasions? like that one, for instance. >> as i was saying, he never showed any of the stress that was going on. he always had a calm atmosphere about him and often times, what was kind of interesting was, again with the vice president, it was informal so he would be able to cut out of the white house and oftentimes, go for a run.
during very stressful times he would bring a couple of agents with him and run the tow paths in washington's. washington. >> he ran so often and without much advance notice that it was my understanding that a couple of agents every shift, every day, would be bring running shoes just in case. >> the two designated runners would climb into the car and off we would go. >> come >> shepard: did you ever run with him? >> we ran with him on several occasions. he engaged us by first name and we talked along the way. >> i remember reading back on his life that there was a particular day when the secret service was planning a 10k and he wanted to get in on it? >> absolutely. as we were running, or some of our agents were running with him, they told him that they were getting ready for a 10k
that was being sponsored by beltsville in our training facility. and at the time president bush said it, i'd love to go but i guess we better trained for it. after that every day everybody would bring in their clothes and i was fortunate to go with him. and at that time he set a personal record. >> he wasn't going to be left behind, that's for certain. thank you so much, sir, it's an honor to speak with you. >> i'm honored to be able to talk about such a patriot and a hero. >> mike emanuel, our chief congressional correspondent is with us as we watch the president's plane returned to washington. we were at a christmas get-together last night, mike, and some friends were saying,
how do they transport the casket? will they make room for him inside the plane or, how does that work? and though i didn't know the specifics at that moment, i was confident he would be inside that plane. and, you will see a lot of special arrangements there on the tarmac, at andrews joint air force base just outside of washington, d.c., before his body isn't motorcade they are to the united states capitol for for a very official welcoming ceremony. then the public will get a chance to pay his respects to the 41st president of the united states later this evening and that will continue all day tomorrow, into wednesday morning. then wednesday morning of course we will head for the national cathedral across the town for a very special general service they are at the national cathedral where son, george
george w. bush will headline the people who deliver eulogies at this funeral. 45 people throughout our american people, so when a president passes on it's an extra ordinary moment in this country and you will see all of that they are on the tarmac at andrews, here at the capitol, and at the national cathedral in the coming days. >> mike emanuel, thank you. john roberts is reporting from the white house this afternoon. john, days of remembrances. the bush family has been very specific to remind us that this is to be a celebration of george busch's life. >> i think that's really the way the bush family wants it as well and that's why you saw president george w. bush in an interview with 60 minutes last night praising his father. he was asked norah o'donnell, if you look back over time, the legacy of the president gets
better and president bush 43 said, we all do. we all look better, that's the way time works. but he also said that he thought his father would go down as the greatest one term president ever, because of his foreign policy experience in the way he conducted foreign policy, deftly handling the end of the cold war. he said for example, reunification with germany. during their bilateral meeting at the g20 in buenos aires on saturday, the german chancellor angela merkel completely agreed with that, saying that bush 41 is seen as and, and his body will lie in state, and i'm sure
he had gone down as one of the greatest two-term presidents ever. working with mikhail gorbachev on that, and the way that he allowed his commanders, including colin powell and general schwarzkopf to conduct the gulf war one in such a way that it was one very swiftly, very decisively, and one back the oilfields of kuwait, his approval rating by the way. after that conflict, was 89%. it's interesting to note that the only other president that's had a higher approval rating in modern times than that was his son. right after 9/11, george w. bush's approval rating was up 92%. so what happens here in the next few days? he will lie in state in the rotunda of the capitol building and president trump is expected at some point to go up and pay his respects.
vice president pence will participate in the ceremonies this afternoon to begin lying in state and president trump and the first lady will be going to the funeral on wednesday, although it doesn't look like president trump will be speaking. that will be left to george w. bush and brian mulroney, as well as senator alan simpson. this kicks off a celebration of a true american hero and a true american patriot. >> john roberts. let's wait for the plane to taxi and the late president's remains be taken away in the motorcade. also interviewed him, and interviewed more than 100 people or a history project on both bush presidency is. professor perry is the director
of presidential studies at the university of virginia miller center and has also been in a couple of documentaries in the works. it's an honor to have you here. when you consider a man who lives to the ripe age of 94, whose service to the nation began at 18 years old, and continued until his last breath, it is a hard thing even to imagine. as a person, though, so humble. >> he was. and we have said over and over again since his passing, certainly those of us who study him go back to his mother and one on influence she had on him. his mother seemed to be, much like rose kennedy for the kennedy's son, she had that knack to inculcate and her son, george w. bush, that sense of, don't talk about yourself.
and always would tell the story as a child or teenager, he would come home and tell her that he scored a run in the baseball game, he loved baseball. she would say, that's nice, how did the team do? he never wanted to draw attention to himself, and that's part and parcel of the greatest definition. >> shepard: it is. and yet this president, his humility stretched all the way to ed dana carvey episode on "saturday night live." it's extraordinary at the time it even more so now. >> how many presidents can stand to have fun poked at them. president kennedy was that way,
people might remember von meter, he was asked, how do you respond to his statements about you? but if you can poke fun at yourself, i just love those scenes where dana carvey is in the white house and he says, how do you do george bush? it's a little bit of mr. rogers and you overlay that was john wayne. and i'm not going to try to do the john wayne impersonation but, it's exactly on point. and bush loved it and he knew that would bolster the spirit of those who had lost in his reelection campaign. >> shepard: sometimes presidents lead with forests and endurance and sometimes it's important for presidents to lead with human humility and an understanding that none of this is such a big deal that we can't be made fun of and have a moment of humility.
>> and he knew his priorities. as people said, faith, family, friends and fun. he loved to have fun with his sports and his sense of humor. he had both leadership and humility, and doesn't make for for the best leader? >> historically it does. my very few times around him, a couple times in the white house, i was always struck by how many names he knew and how many specifics he could remember and how we would always seem to managed a smile under all circumstances? >> and that must come from those experiences that we had in world war iii. world war ii. when you have faced death as george h.w. bush did in 1944 in the south pacific, you must have a different view of life which is embrace it and have fun with it. when you need to be serious, be
serious and lead, and be kind to people but don't take yourself too seriously. >> shepard: one thing i've learned over the last couple days since the president died is that he has kept what i'm guessing will prove to be an extraordinarily extraordinary record of his extraordinary life. that we haven't been privity to yet. >> that is correct but he has kept this diary all along. and we do oral history, and they state they have to do that now in the postelection era because no one keeps a diary. but george h.w. bush kept a diary and it will be invaluable to his history, as as a c. >> shepard: stayed with us for just a moment, we are pausing for just a moment because at this moment we want our local stations to join us for special coverage.
this is fox news coverage of george w. bush's final trip to washington. i'm shepard smith reporting from new york. a live look on the left-hand side of your screen, now from joint base andrews where bush senior's casket has arrived. one of the jets it normally serves as air force one has been renamed and recommissioned for this day, special air mission 41. we are expecting a formal arrival ceremony on the tarmac on your screen before a person takes his remains to capitol hill. they are, the former president will lie in state and the capitol rotunda until wednesday morning. that will be open to the public starting tonight, so people who wish to can pay their respects. over the next 30 minutes for the ceremony we will have live coverage on fox news channel and fox television stations across the nation without commercial interruption. let's bring in professor barbara perry, who coedited a book about
president bush 41. she also interviewed more than 100 people for a history project on both bush presidency is. professor perry is the director of presidential studies at the university of virginia and has been with us for the last 5 minutes or so on the fox news channel and is with us on all news stations now. at this moment from what i know of george bush, he would find something warm and uplifting to say and remind us that we ought to be celebrating because he was given the greatest opportunity of all time. >> he thought he had the best life in the world and he knew he was born to privilege. i pointed out that he could have lived that life of privilege and he probably could have gotten a desk job during world war ii, but imagine, at age 18, signing on with the navy and signing on for the most difficult and dangerous duty possible, to be an aviator in combat in the
south pacific. he was a risk-taker, we know he was jumping out of airplanes at 90 years old but that was all part and parcel of embracing life. he would have had something warm to say to those he left behind just as he did so frequently in his letters because those are also a treasure trove, a window into the soul of george h.w. bush. we hope that soul now is at peace and with his loved ones and the great beyond. >> shepard: before his death, he said, i don't know if my 3-year-old will be a 3-year-old in heaven or a middle age or in heaven. but i can't wait to see her. but what i hope it is, i hope she is still three. >> that is so sweet. that just breaks my heart. the letter i always point out is a letter he wrote to his mother a few weeks after robin died. they had four boys and it was rambunctious and he wrote the most moving letter to his mother
to say, we need a little girl. they got that, they got dorothy, or dora as she was called, named for his mother. you might remember that when mrs. bush died in april that it was his daughter, his only daughter that sat next to him and rubbed his shoulders during the most difficult parts of the service. >> shepard: i found it remarkable that this life of extraordinary accomplishment, extraordinary service to the nation and the world, who produced children and grandchildren, who have exceeded most parents wildest dreams, that even in his final days he was thinking of a little girl who he never got to know past three years old. >> you mentioned me seeing him, i saw him last year at this time down at the bush library for the 20th anniversary there at texas texas a&m. you might remember that all of the living presidents came together on stage to raise money
for hurricane relief in that area. there he was in a wheelchair, but just blowing, to be in front of 20 some odd thousand people to be with his fellow presidents. and i think that even until the end he was thinking about his life of public service but also about those families and friends, like jim baker, his lifelong friend virtually. so we just have to think back on those joys and celebrate that, and know that when i was at the library and i saw that final resting place of robin, she was brought from the family cemetery in connecticut to the bush library, and now to know that her mother is there and soon in a few days will be joined by her father, that made me feel good about the family, that they will be together on this earth and beyond. >> i remember being with all of you at the episcopal church for the passing of his late wife, and thinking about this man who had had such an incredible support network, who was so in
love with "the boss" i believe is what she was called at one point, and how he would be over the next year. from all that i've been able to learn, he continually surprised his caregivers and loved ones and everyone else. >> i know exactly how this is. my dad was a world war ii vet and we lost my mother in 2005, they were married over 60 years. that generation, and he was gone within ten months of my mother. he said to me one night over dinner, i hate to leave you kids but i'm ready to go. he said it was going to be like when he was reunited with my mother when he came back from overseas after world war ii. he said, she ran so fast toward me that her hat flew off and that is a picture ahead of them in heaven. >> that's a mighty nice way of
thinking of things. barbara peary, thank you so muc much. john roberts has been around that white house for quite a while. i haven't so much but i do remember him coming back to see his son on his last day. just bounding about the place and saying hello to old friends, and now he returns for the last time. >> he was such a fixture here in washington, for so many years. every day when i would drive home to my house, i'm reminded of him because i drive past the george h.w. bush center for intelligence, which is how the cia was renamed. and how many times have we flown into george bush international airport down there in houston? you asked mike emanuel a few minutes ago about special efforts that had been taken to
get president bush's remains aboard air force one. you will notice that the cargo container there has been jacked up not to the belly of the aircraft but the actual back door of the cabin in the aircraft because, what they did in order to have them write in the cabin and not in the belly of the plane was, they took out a lot of the seats that were in the center section of the aircraft are there. where that door is is just forward of where the secret service and some of the military aides ride in a typical flight aboard air force one. so the presidents remain in the casket have been writing in the main cabin of the aircraft, which, you know, they could have put him in the bottom which isn't exactly a cargo hold of, but they wanted to make his last ride to washington here are a comfortable one and he's writing in the cabin of the aircraft. you can see that box up there on the sister jack, right at the back door of the cabin of the aircraft is the honor guard proceeds to the back of air force one as his casket will
be brought out soon. but shep, you know the number of years that george bush spent in washington, whether it was as the cia director and whether as president he did leave a lasting legacy here, there was such a tremendous respect for him that there is just not enough people that say enough good things about him. we should point out that for folks who might be here in washington visiting, you can't get into pennsylvania avenue to the white house for the next three days. it's being shut down because they are putting in some viewing areas the funeral coach will come past the white house one last time as a casket as transported from the capitol building up to the national cathedral for the funeral, which will take place on wednesday morning. then his remains will be transported back to andrews and he will make the final trip home to college station where his
remains will be interred there at the george bush library. >> shepard: you know i was thinking, as that is these sorts of events were, someone that everyone in the nation has come to know, as sad as these things are, there is something that is strangely comforting about the ritual and the historic practices of it all. the respect that is granted to one that held that position. i find it comforting. >> what's really amazing in this case is the long and rich life that george bush lived. he was jumping out of airplanes at the age of 90 and he lived to the ripe old age of 94. we should also point out that jimmy carter is 94 years old as well, so you have two former presidents who are living well into their 90s. anytime anybody makes it into their 90s -- my mother died at the age of 96. while you are sad to see them go, you know that they have
lived an incredible life. george h.w. bush lived an incredible life, no question about that. and the way that he put his family literally before anything i think is a real example to every parent in america about what is really important in this world. >> shepard: i was listening to mitch mcconnell a minute ago saying, any of these jobs that he would have held would have made a mark on american history. and mitch mcconnell in wonderment said, he held them all. he did, and he did a good job at all of them as anyone will tell you. but you know i talked about the first gulf war and the way that was prosecuted in such a way that it resulted in an overwhelming victory for american forces very swiftly. that is a defining moment for president bush. but i think the defining moment is the way he picked up the torch from ronald reagan, in
1989, and working together with mikhail gorbachev on a project that could have gone south very quickly and very badly oversaw the end of the cold war. and again, angela merkel over the weekend is saying that george bush in germany was considered to be one of the fathers of reunification. that in and of itself was a stunning achievement but it's only one of many achievements that he engaged in. >> stayed with us if you would. if there is something of note, i would like to listen in.
>> shepard: the remains of president george h.w. bush, the 412st president have returned to washington for the final time. his remains will lie in the house rotunda through wednesday. for those of you watching on fox television stations across the nation. we thank you. coverage continues now on fox news channel on satellite and cable. more on your local news on this fox station. i'm shepard smith. fox news, new york. and continuing on fox news channel with our chief white house correspondent john
roberts. a motorcade now and his remains will lie in repose beginning, when? >> beginning later on this afternoon, shep in the 4:00 hour there will be a ceremony to begin the public viewing starts at 7:30 tonight. so, for right now, it will be just members of congress, vice president mike pence will be there as well. you saw just as they were pulling back off the tail of special air mission 41 the numbers 29,000. there are two 747s configured to be the main aircraft for air force 1, 28,000 and 29,000. 29,000 is the one that president trump typically uses. it was refurbished not too long ago, 28,000 is mostly used as the support plane for big overseas missions. so, president bush was flying back on the plane that president trump uses all the time and his son used all the time as well. and, again, the interior was
reconfigured somewhat. a bunch of seats were taken out so president bush could ride back in the cabin of air force one for his final trip back to washington. but it will be a very heart felt ceremony at the capitol building in just a short time. you want to make sure if you are watching now that you stick around for that. the public viewing will be tonight, again, beginning at 7:00. i believe it goes until midnight. and then his body will lie in repose all day tomorrow at 7:00 on wednesday morning. they will again the process of asimming transport the casket from the capital building down constitution avenue up pennsylvania avenue in front of the white house and then up to connecticut to the national cathedral. that is going to be quite something to see the last time i saw that was when president reagan died a number of years ago. and you said, shep, that to some degree while these events are sad they are also comforting for the country. i