George H.W. Bush's Death Spurs Tributes From Clintons to Trump

(Bloomberg) -- Tributes flowed for George H.W. Bush after the 41st U.S. president died at his home in Houston on Friday. He was 94. President Donald Trump has declared Wednesday, Dec. 5, a national day of mourning.

“President Bush always found a way to set the bar higher,” Trump and first lady Melania Trump said in a statement on Saturday, adding that they “join with a grieving nation” in mourning his predecessor.

George H.W. Bush's Death Spurs Tributes From Clintons to Trump

The former congressman from Texas, who served as president from 1989 to 1993, inspired generations of fellow Americans to public service and to illuminate “the greatness, hope, and opportunity of America to the world,” the Trumps said. “His example lives on, and will continue to stir future Americans to pursue a greater cause.”

Tributes flowed on social media and in Washington for the man who was the longest-living president in American history. President Bush used a wheelchair in recent years after being diagnosed with a form of Parkinson’s disease.

“Whenever I was with him I saw his absolute joy for life and true pride in his family. His accomplishments were great from beginning to end.” Trump added in a later tweet. “He was a truly wonderful man and will be missed by all!”

Here are some of the other people who paid tribute to Bush:

  • “George H.W. Bush was a man of the highest character and the best dad a son or daughter could ask for,” former President George W. Bush said in a statement. “The entire Bush family is deeply grateful for 41’s life and love, for the compassion of those who have cared and prayed for dad, and for the condolences of our friends and fellow citizens.”
  • “America has lost a patriot and humble servant,” former President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle said in a statement.
  • “Few Americans have been -- or will ever be -- able to match President Bush’s record of service to the United States and the joy he took every day from it; from his military service in World War II, to his work in Congress, the United Nations, China, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Vice Presidency and the Presidency, where he worked to move the post Cold War world toward greater unity, peace, and freedom,” former President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton, said in a statement.
  • It was a “stroke of luck” in German history that he was U.S. president when Germany reunification became possible, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a letter of condolence. Germany experienced the “power and reliability of the German-American friendship” during his presidency, she said.
  • Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie Gregoire Trudeau offered condolences to the Bush family “and the American people” in a tweet marking the former president’s “exemplary service and deep commitment to his country.”
  • “The world has lost a statesman and a leader who was an example to us all. I personally have lost a friend,” European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said in a statement. “I will never forget the role he played in making Europe a safer and more united place following the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Iron Curtain.”
  • “At each stage of his remarkable career, the President worked side by side with his friends, colleagues and counterparts in the United Kingdom,” British Prime Minister Theresa May said in a tribute. “Today Britain remembers a great statesman and a true friend of our country.”
  • “President Bush was the embodiment of the values of the United States, standing up for what was right and fighting throughout his life for freedom from tyranny and oppression in any guise,” Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said in a statement. “He was a true friend to Australia.”
  • Apple Inc. Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said the country had “lost a great American. Service defined President George H.W. Bush’s life, and he taught all of us about leadership, sacrifice and decency. We send our deepest sympathies to the Bush family,” Cook said in a Twitter post.
  • “He was the world’s most prominent skydiver. Last jumped at age 90!” said Tom Enders, CEO of Airbus SE.
  • ‘His example will always inspire and his lifetime of service will be enshrined in the hearts of the American people forever,” Vice President Mike Pence said in a statement.
  • Secretary of State Michael Pompeo called Bush “one of America’s most consequential and dedicated public servants.”
  • “I have often told my children, ‘if you want a role model in your life, look to President George Herbert Walker Bush.’ The world mourns the loss of a great American. But it also celebrates a life well lived,” former Vice President Dan Quayle said.
  • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement that Bush’s legacy “will rank among the most distinguished statesmen our nation has ever produced.”
  • Bush “believed deeply in the power of international cooperation,” said International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde. “The arc of his career,” she said, “was defined by a commitment to creating a more prosperous and peaceful future for all people. His life’s work is a powerful and timely reminder of what can be achieved when nations work together.”
  • “Decorated in his youth for valor in combat, took his experience in war to build a better world as our commander in chief,” said U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis. “His example will long guide our Sailors, Soldiers, Airmen and Marines for how to live life without regret.”

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.