Former President George H Bush jokes put the harps back in the closet

Millions worldwide send well wishes, prayers and texts to President Bush upon hearing of the his hospitalization

George H.W. Bush using wheelchair in Intensive care (ABC News)

The 88-year-old former United States President who has also been battling Parkinson’s has been hospitalized after a month-long illness.

Jim McGrath, spokesman for former President George H.W. Bush, has released an email the 41st president’s chief of staff, Jean Becker, sent earlier today in response to news yesterday that Bush was in intensive care with a fever.

He’ll remain in the hospital, Becker said, but isn’t going anywhere soon: “He is 88 years old, he had a terrible case of bronchitis which then triggered a series of complications.” 

Becker’s full email:

Someday President George H.W. Bush might realize how beloved he is, but of course one of the reasons why he is so beloved is because he has no idea.

Most of the civilized world emailed/called/texted yesterday after we released this statement to the media:


HOUSTON — Following is a statement by Bush family spokesman Jim McGrath.

“Following a series of setbacks including a persistent fever, President Bush was admitted to the intensive care unit at Methodist Hospital on Sunday where he remains in guarded condition. Doctors at Methodist continue to be cautiously optimistic about the current course of treatment. The President is alert and conversing with medical staff, and is surrounded by family.”

Jean Becker said the 88-year-old Bush is sick and will be in the hospital for some time after a “terrible case of bronchitis which then triggered a series of complications.”

Bush was admitted to Methodist Hospital in Houston on Nov. 23 for treatment of what Jim McGrath described as a “stubborn” cough. “He had spent about a week there earlier in November for treatment of the same condition.”

In recent years former President Bush developed Parkinson’s disease and uses wheelchairs and walkers to keep his mobility.

Son Jeb Bush told CBC “his father at 87 year of age can no longer walk on his own.”

“That’s hard for a guy who’s been so vital and vigorous in life,” said Jeb Bush, who also called his father his “hero” and added, “I’ve never met a man as near perfect as George H.W. Bush.”

“Bush family friend Jerry Weintraub said that Bush has struggled increasingly with the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease in recent years.”

“He’s not doing great, he’s not terrible but he’s not doing great. He’s a very active guy and when you get Parkinson’s and all of a sudden you’re riding around in a wheelchair and this and that and he can’t do things for himself . . . it’s tough.” (Northwest Parkinson’s Foundation)

With story from Dallas News

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