COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Friends and family of former President George H.W. Bush recalled his prolific letter writing Wednesday as they gathered to mark the first day of issue for the U.S. Postal Service stamp honoring him.
“He never let even a day pass before he took out a card or a piece of stationary and penned his thanks, greetings, regrets, observations, congratulations, consolations, condolences, encouragements, jokes, gentle gibes and much else to whomever he had just seen or just thought about,” said Chase Untermeyer, a longtime friend who was director of presidential personnel in the Bush administration.
[How George H.W. Bush used handwritten thank-you notes to ink his values]
The event, which was held on what would have been Bush’s 95th birthday, took place on the Texas A&M University campus in College Station, where Bush’s presidential library is located. Bush, who was the 41st president, served from 1989 to 1993. He died in Houston on Nov. 30 at age 94.
His grandson, Pierce Bush, said his grandfather’s words, dreams and hopes live on through his letters.
“As a man who struggled to sometimes articulate how he felt through spoken word or in public speeches, he never once remotely struggled to express himself fully when penning and mailing someone a letter,” Pierce Bush said.
“His letters showed his unique ability to lift others up, just at the time they needed to be lifted,” he said.