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tv   President George H.W. Bush Capitol Rotunda Ceremony  CSPAN  December 4, 2018 3:04am-3:49am EST

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>> the body of president george h.w. bush arrived in the capital to lie in state. , paul ryan, mitch mcconnell, and vice president pence spoke. the house and senate chaplains gave the indication and benediction. >> let us pray. thanks, almighty god
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for the appearance among us of great men and women who serve as inspirations for all americans to be their best in service to god, country, and neighbor. honor our 41st .resident, george h w bush president bush dedicated his entire life to public service. as a vocation first in the military, then as a member of congress, a diplomat, director of the cia, vice president and finally, president. it is a record of service reminiscent of john quincy adams and unmatched in nearly a century. we thank you oh god for having endowed president bush with
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hisesse oblige and ask that service to others might be an inspiration to all americans, indeed to all the world. as we continue this celebration of honor, grant that all who attend to these proceedings might be desirous of being our best selves in service to all of our brothers and sisters as you might call us to be. dear lord, thank you for inspiring such greatness in president george h.w. bush and continue to bless the united states of america. amen.
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>> 30 years ago, on the west front of this capital, george herbert walker bush addressed the nation for the first time as our president. meet on the front porch of democracy come a good place to talk as neighbors and as friends. servants of a humble who loved his fellow citizens and of a principled leader who knew america not only guards its own future but also safeguards democracy for the world. today, this hero has returned to on the frontot porch of our democracy this time but here in its hallowed
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cathedral. but nice paintings that tell the story of our land and our liberty. and flanked by statues of his fellow champions who he joined in making that story possible. just a teenager when he volunteered for military service. and the cave -- and became the aviator.ungest elite he was only 20 on that day when his plane was hit on a bombing run. but through the fire and smoke, george bush stayed steady at the controls. only once he accomplished his mission did he parachute out over the pacific. a steady hand staying the course. that is what george bush gave us for decades.
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congressman,ator, ambassador to the united nations, envoy to china, cia director, eight years as vice president, and our commander in chief. through the cold war and the soviet union's collapse he kept us on course. when the role of law needed defending in the persian gulf he kept us on course. with his even temperament and hard-won expertise, george herbert walker bush steered this country as straight as he steered that airplane. he kept us flying high and challenged us to fly higher still. and he did it with modesty and kindness that would have been surprising in someone one tends as tough and accomplished as he
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was. us patriot who lies before was blessed with many gifts but there was no doubt which he prized most of all. the great love story began at that christmas dance when george bush met barbara pierce and the grace and virtue they taught their children have enriched this nation to a family of leaders. today, the nation stands with that family, with our 43rd president, with jeb, neil, marvin, and dora and all of the bush grandchildren and great-grandchildren. mourningwith you in but also in gratitude. livedude for lives well and duties thoroughly fulfilled. gratitude that god gave this
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bushry george and barbara and that they may now be reunited in the light of his grace. >> as americans, we have no more solemn duty then laying a great patriot to rest. here lies a great man. family, on behalf of the whole house, republicans and democrats, we are profoundly sorry for your loss and we are
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honored to celebrate this wonderful life with you. , i feel a personal debt of gratitude today, a countlessno doubt millions of americans are feeling at this moment. the 1988 campaign was the first one i was ever involved in. at theenough literature ballgames and the rock county 4-h fair. i remember going to a big rally at miami-dade ohio the day after the first debate. the whole experience drew me into politics. he was the first president i had a chance to vote for. president the first to teach me and many of us that in a democracy sometimes, you fall short. that, that isndle
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just as important as how you win. an old preacher once said -- grace is but glory begun and glory is but grace perfected. begun andut glory glory is but grace perfected. is transcendent in the life of our republic. callrotunda is a trumpet to glory. tributes to the giants all the way up into the sky. grace, grace is different. it is more elemental. it is not larger than life. it is the stuff of life. the connective tissue in a free society.
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it deepens the well of our common humanity. service,t his life of president bush personified grace. character was his second to none. he reached the heights of power with uncommon human -- humility. he made monumental contributions to freedom with a fundamental decency that resonates across generations. one better harmonized the joy of life and the duty of life. is that indelible image of his as command -- of him as commander-in-chief during the gulf war waving to a sea of troops during a visit during thanksgiving. there are all of these images we husbandhim as a devoted with a twinkle in the eye that
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barbara always brought out especially in the big, huge family photos you had in kennebunkport. this one i will never forget. there was that image of him as a loving father reaching out to hold the hand of his son at the national cathedral after 9/11. there is a letter he wrote his 1990ren on the last day of as he wrestled with the decision over operation desert storm. telling the family christmas and he apologized if he seemed distracted. i tried not to be, he writes, and then for about a page he elaborates on his struggle over sending young americans into harms way. --ce in the letter he writes every human life is precious.
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in the original copy, he adds by hand a note wishing his family a new year. times, georgeal demonstratedr bush the finest qualities of our nation and of humankind. a great leader and a good band. -- and a good man. a gentle soul of firm resolve. live isd us that how we as important as what we achieve. hymn of honor. his legacy is grace perfected. his memory will belong to glory. president of 41st the united states.
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>> speaker ryan, leader mcconnell, delete schumer, leader pelosi, members of guests,, distinguished but most of all, president george w. bush, governor jeb dora and thearvin, entire bush family -- it is deeply humbling to stand before of aoday at the beginning
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week in our nation capital when we will commemorate and celebrate the lifetime of service and leadership of the 41st president of the united states, president george herbert walker bush. the bible tells us to mourn with those that mourn and grieve with those that grieve and today, on behalf of the first family and my family and the american people, we offer our deepest sympathies and respects to your family. and we thank you for sharing this special man with our nation and the world. bush, president george becomes the 32nd american to lie in state in the u.s. national rotunda.
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soon, americans from every corner of the country and every walk of life will make their way to this rotunda to pay the respects of a grateful nation. on the death of, it is written that king david said -- do you not realize that a commander and a great man has fallen in israel this day. bush wasrbert walker such a man. while he was known as the quiet man, he was not for lack of nerve or daring for in all of his 94 years, president bush never lost his love for adventure and he never failed to answer the call to serve his country. born into a tradition of public service, george herbert walker bush began his own life of service when he was still in high school. after the japanese attacked pearl harbor in december of 1941, he wanted to do his part so he enlisted in the united
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states navy on his 18th birth rate. on receiving his wings, he became the nation's youngest aviator and was sent to the south pacific where his story almost ended. raidmber 1944 on a bombing , his aircraft was hit. his engine caught fire. he still managed to hit his target before bailing out and being rescued by american forces after some four hours as he. all told, he flew 58 combat missions and for his bravery under fire he earned the distinguished flying cross which would've been enough honor for any american life. but george herbert walker bush was just getting started. stakede came home, he his claim to a booming postwar america i making a name himself in the oil business. her four years he walked these halls as a congressman from houston. ofsident nixon took notice
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the young texan and asked him to be our ambassador to the united nations. he led our party during a tumultuous time for the presidency and after earning the respect of another president, he did the work of a diplomat as first united states envoy to china and lead the cia. and then, for eight years, george herbert walker bush served as the 43rd vice president of the united days. he wasld that as preparing to become vice president he once joked about the job saying that there was "nothing substantive to do at all." [laughter] records, during those years he set the standard. as a sound counselor and loyal advisor to an outsider who came to washington, d.c. to shake
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things up, cut taxes, rebuild the military, and together they did just that. then, in 1988, he made history again. when george herbert walker bush was elected in a landslide as the 41st president of the united states of america. he coming the first sitting vice president to win the presidency in more than 150 years of our history. he served during an uncertain time in the world. made momentous by his leadership. falldent bush oversaw the of the soviet union, the crumbling of the berlin wall, and under his leadership, america won the cold war. to war tor nation repel aggression and the persian gulf and through his leadership as commander-in-chief and the brilliance of our armed forces, the united states won a
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decisive victory. when president george herbert walker bush left office, he left america and the world more peaceful, prosperous, and secure. president bush was a great leader. who made a great difference in the life of this nation. just a good man. who was devoted to his wife, his family, and his friends. to meet himenough in 1988. when he was vice president. and i was a 29-year-old just getting started in politics. struck byways, i was his approachability. there was a kindness about the man. that was evident to everyone that ever met him. all of his years in public service were characterized by
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kindness, modesty, and patriotism. he was so modest in fact that he never wrote an autobiography. but he did leave a record of his life in the thousands of letters that he wrote. startedd that he writing letters to his parents when he was 18 years old and over time, his circle of correspondence grew to include family, friends, advisers, staff, business associates, former president, and just about anyone that took the trouble to write to him. after a lifetime of writing got one just not too long ago. as i told two of his sons this weekend, when our son made his first tail hook landing as a georgeaviator on the uss
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herbert walker bush, i took the liberty of writing the ship's namesake to ask for a small favor. did not write him as a vice president to a former president, i just wrote as a proud dad of a naval aviator to a former pilot. i asked him to sign a picture of the flight deck that i could give to my son. now, we were told by the staff that the president had long since ended the practice of signing autographs. and we understood that. surprise, justy in time for my sons winging, there came not only a signed photograph but, of course, a letter, hand signed as well. august, 2018. and in that letter, president his wrote to my son in
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words, congratulations on receiving your wings of gold. i know how proud you and your family are of this moment. and then in words he assured us that this letter came directly from him. he wrote "though we have not met , i share the pride your father has for you during this momentous occasion and i wish you many cavu days ahead. bush." best, g. i would come to learn that that cavu for short is a term navy pilots have used since world war ii. it stands for sealing and visibility unlimited. -- ceiling and visibility unlimited. he described it as the kind of weather that pilots wanted as they flew off to the pacific.
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and he once wrote a letter to his children saying that cavu my ownwords describes life as it has been over the years and as it is right now. visibility unlimited. describe the well essence of this man. and it may well have been his vision. the vision he had for his life. for his children. and his children's children. and his country. no barriers. no boundaries. no limits. so, we mourn with those who mourn and grieve with those who grieve. but we do not grieve like those that have no hope. for president george herbert walker bush had that hope. sustained him
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throughout his life of service and we pray that faith will be a source of comfort for all of those that mourn the loss of this good man. and great american. president george herbert walker bush loved his family and he served his country. his example will always inspire and his lifetime of service will be enshrined in the hearts of the american people for ever. may god bless the memory of george herbert walker bush and god comfort his family and friends and may god continue to bless the united states of america.
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♪ [choir singing] ["america the beautiful"] ♪
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♪ [choir singing]
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>> let us pray. eternal father, strong to save. in whom we live and move and have our being, we praise you for your generous providence that provided our nation and world with the gift of your servant, president george herbert walker bush. lord, we are grateful for the privilege you gave us to learn
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and grow from his integrity, kindness, heroism, courage, excellence, service, intellect, humility, civility, and spirituality. as we celebrate this well lived life, challenge us oh god, to also leave the world better than we found it. continue to cover those who -- continue to comfort those who mourn. touch each member of the bush family with your mercy, love and grace. and god, support us all the day long, until the shadows lengthen and the evening comes.
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and the busy world lies hushed and the fever of life is over. and our work is done. then, in your mercy, grant us a safe lodging and holy rest. and a peace at last. we pray in the name of george herbert walker bush's savior and friend, jesus christ. amen.
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>> the casket of former president towards h.w. bush will lie in state at the capitol rotunda until wednesday morning to allow the public to pay their respects. adnesday has been declared national day of mourning and the former president will be a funeral at washington national cathedral. later his body will be returned to texas for a public viewing in houston wednesday night. thursday, a funeral service will be followed by a burial that afternoon at the george bush presidential library and museum in college station. >> c-span's "washington journal" live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. coming up this morning, we will discuss the latest on the farm
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bill and efforts to pass the legislation with the politico katherinee reporter boudreau. and national association of state department agriculture's barbara glenn talks about agriculture policy and the new united states, mexico, canada agreement and we will talk about the upcoming senate debate on the final version of the 2018 farm bill with democratic congresswoman -- tina smith, and north dakota republican senator john hogan. be sure to watch c-span's "washington journal" live at 7:00 eastern this morning. join the discussion. view of the live u.s. capitol rotunda where the body of former president george herbert walker bush is lying in state until wednesday. members of the public are allowed to visit the redundant to pay their respects. live coverag


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