The casket of former president George H.W. Bush arrived at the National Cathedral in Washington D.C. on Dec. 5 as former President George W. Bush and other former and current officials looked on.
A 21-gun salute was carried out for the 41st president as military members saluted the former commander-in-chief, who was also a World War II veteran before becoming the CIA director for a number of years.
A military band played “Hail to the Chief” as the casket of the 41st president was carried down the U.S. Capitol steps. George W. Bush placed his hand over his heart and appeared to hold back tears, according to video footage and photos.
Military pallbearers carried Bush’s casket up the steps and into the cathedral, according to The Associated Press.
The ceremonies on Dec. 5 were the final in three days of mourning in Washington D.C. as many honored the former Republican president.
The four living ex-presidents all came, including George W. Bush, who will eulogize his father — and President Donald Trump will attend but is not scheduled to speak. Also attending: one king (Jordan), one queen (Jordan), two princes (Britain, Bahrain), Germany’s chancellor and Poland’s president, among representatives of more than a dozen countries, according to AP.
Former Pres. George W. Bush greets and shakes hands with each of the living presidents and first ladies at the funeral service for his father, George H.W. Bush. https://t.co/d0MoM1oMHy pic.twitter.com/pB9MleZk7J
— ABC News (@ABC) December 5, 2018
“Looking forward to being with the Bush family. This is not a funeral, this is a day of celebration for a great man who has led a long and distinguished life. He will be missed!” Trump tweeted.
On Dec. 4, President Trump and first lady Melania Trump met with George W. Bush and his family.
Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida and son of the 41st president, told the Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council on Tuesday: “The president and first lady have been really gracious.”
“You’ll see a lot of joy,” said Ron Kaufman, Bush’s White House political director, told Reuters of the day. “It’ll show the way of life that people took for granted in many ways and now kind of long for.”
On Dec. 4, former U.S. Sen Bob Dole, 95, arrived at the rotunda in a wheelchair. An aide helped Dole to stand and salute Bush, who defeated him in the fight for the 1988 Republican presidential nomination. Dole, who went on to support Bush as a senator, then sat in his wheelchair for a few moments, appearing to hold back tears.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.