Beliefnet
Safe Place with Ruth Graham

I am grieved by the loss of one of America’s great men. President George H. W. Bush was a true patriot – politics aside – statesman, gentleman and friend to my father. There are pictures that are etched in my mind…one is of the dog “Sully” who was pictured laying in front of the casket. Sully had served the President in many helpful ways the last months of his life. He served his Commander well.

There are those who disparaged that. I am not one of them.

Number 43 loved dogs – of all stripes. He loved his family. His friends. His country. He was a man of principle and pride but not necessarily pride in himself or his accomplishments. He was a “team player” but willing to admit his mistakes. He could fight tooth and nail but then take his opponent to lunch. Rare in our day – so many cannot understand that now. He was a prince among men.

A columnist with my same name has disparaged President Bush’s dog. It has come back on me. She is a columnist for a paper elsewhere and we do not think alike.

I think you all know me well enough to know I would not disparage this great man or his dog. I am sorry this has happened. I would not add an ounce of sorrow to this family’s grief.

As I said, there are many pictures etched in my mind. And more will be added in the next few days. It also brought back so many memories – bittersweet – of my own father’s passing and our trip up to Washington for him to “Lie in Repose” in the Rotunda. All good, sweet memories. But I do miss him so.

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