Former President George H.W. Bush has died at the age of 94. The former president, military veteran, father of a president, former CIA director, and family patriarch was in failing health for several years.
A specific cause of death was not released for the former president, but he had struggled with a series of medical issues. Former President George W. Bush released a statement on the evening of November 30, 2018. It read: “Jeb, Neil, Marvin, Doro, and I are saddened to announce that after 94 remarkable years, our dear Dad has died. George H.W. Bush was a man of the highest character and the best dad a son or daughter could ask for. 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.” The statement was released by Jim McGrath, the Bush family spokesman.
A second statement released by McGrath said: “George Herbert Walker Bush, World War II naval aviator, Texas oil pioneer, and 41st President of the United States of America, died on November 30, 2018. He was 92 and is survived by his five children and their spouses, 17 grandchildren, eight great grandchildren, and two siblings. He was preceded in death by his wife of 73 years, Barbara; his second child Pauline Robinson ‘Robin’ Bush; and his brothers, Prescott and William or ‘Bucky’ Bush. Funeral arrangements will be announced as soon as is practical.”
Bush was born on June 12, 1924. His wife, Barbara Bush, died in April 2018.
Here’s what you need to know about George H.W. Bush’s health situation before his death:
Bush Had Parkinson’s Disease & Was in Intensive Care a Year Before He Died
Marshall Bush, the daughter of Marvin and Margaret Bush, was at George H.W. Bush’s side when he passed away.
“It was incredibly peaceful and sweet — beyond sweet. A bunch of our family and best family friends were there and everyone was touching him and holding him,” she told TODAY. “We just wanted to make sure that he knew that we loved him as much as he loved us. And making sure he wasn’t alone and he was comforted. It was just beautiful. It really was beautiful.”
Bush dealt with a series of health issues related to his advanced age over recent years, reported NBC. He had “a form of Parkinson’s disease and uses a motorized scooter or a wheelchair for mobility,” the network reported, and he “was hospitalized in Maine in 2015 after falling at his summer home and breaking a bone in his neck.” He was also hospitalized for shortness of breath in 2014, and he was in intensive care two years before that because of bronchitis, reported NBC News.
Bush suffered from Vascular Parkinsonism. The Caller Times reports he died of that. Vascular Parkinsonism is an “atypical Parkinsonism” that has Parkinson’s-like symptoms, but it doesn’t share the same cause as Parkinson’s, according to the Baylor College of Medicine. You can read more about Bush’s struggle with Vascular Parkinsonism here.
“Vascular (also referred to as ‘multi-infarct’) parkinsonism is a form of ‘atypical parkinsonism’ in which parkinsonian symptoms (slow movements, tremor, difficulty with walking and balance, stiffness and rigidity) are produced by one or more small strokes, rather than by gradual loss of nerve cells as seen in the more typical neurodegenerative Parkinson’s disease,” Baylor reports.
In 2017, Bush ended up in the intensive care unit.
George H.W. Bush – the nation’s oldest living president – was in the hospital intensive care unit, his spokesman told the news media on January 18, 2017. His wife, Barbara, was also briefly hospitalized at the same time.
At that time, both Bushes recovered enough that they participated in the coin toss at Super Bowl 2017.
In 2017, Bush’s spokesman said that the former president was taken to Houston Methodist Hospital because he was complaining of shortness of breath, CNN reported. He was recovering from pneumonia.
Former President George W. Bush wrote on social media on January 19, 2017 that “your prayers are working” and both his parents were doing better and “fighting on.”
Jimmy Carter was born a few months after Bush in October 1924. Bush was born in June, and that made him the oldest living president.
Only two other U.S. presidents outlived Bush in years: Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford were both age 93 when they died. After Bush and Carter, the next oldest presidents were John Adams and Herbert Hoover, who both lived to 90, according to AOL News and the Associated Press.
Born George Herbert Walker Bush in 1924 in Massachusetts, Bush also served as vice president under Ronald Reagan and as the director of the Central Intelligence Agency during his lengthy career in public service. He also served in the U.S. House of Representatives and is a veteran of World War II, according to Biography.com.
George H.W. Bush has a reported net worth of about $23 million, although a lot of his wealth is tied up in property.