WASHINGTON, D.C. — Heritage Foundation President Kay Coles James today issued the following statement on the death of former President George H.W. Bush:
"George H.W. Bush will be remembered for his astonishing accomplishments and his unremitting patriotism. He displayed amazing courage as a young pilot who was shot down in World War II. That dauntless spirit never diminished, as shown by the way he chose to celebrate his 75th, 80th, 85th and 90th birthdays: by skydiving.
"He was a remarkable success as a businessman. But he is best known for his long career in public service as ambassador, party leader, CIA director, vice president and, finally, president.
"President Bush is one of my American heroes. He was an unrivaled public servant, a humanitarian and faithful family man. As someone who had the honor of serving in his administration, and calling him a friend, I know that history will remember 41 well.
"President Bush was ever willing to disregard personal gain to pursue a public calling—and few did so with his grace and dignity.
"The commander-in-chief who led a coalition of nations to reverse Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait was the same man who, for eight years, loyally stood by Pres. Reagan as vice president.
"He shared Pres. Reagan’s deep love for the American people. Throughout his life—in public service and in the private sector—he personally penned notes of thanks and encouragement to thousands of people, ordinary as well as extraordinary, who came into his orbit. And he closed a half-century in the spotlight by building an organization that continues to recognize and promote Americans’ selfless service and volunteerism: the Points of Light Foundation, which is now Points Of Light Institute.
"George H.W. Bush’s character and commitment to our nation were reflections of his faith. They were also attributes he passed on through his children and grandchildren. May God comfort them and the rest of the Bush family in their grief."