President George Herbert Walker Bush
b.12 Jun 1924 Milton, Norfolk, Massachusetts, United States
m. 6 AUG 1921
Facts and Events
George Herbert Walker Bush (born June 12, 1924) is a retired American politician who served as the 41st President of the United States from 1989 to 1993. A Republican, he had previously served as the 43rd Vice President of the United States (1981–1989), a congressman, an ambassador, and Director of Central Intelligence. He is the oldest living former President and Vice President. He is also the last living former President who is a veteran of World War II. Bush is often referred to as "George H. W. Bush", "Bush 41", "Bush the Elder", Bush I, or "George Bush Sr." to distinguish him from his son, former President George W. Bush. Prior to his son's presidency, he was known simply as George Bush or President Bush.
Bush was born in Milton, Massachusetts, to Senator Prescott Bush and Dorothy Walker Bush. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, Bush postponed college, enlisted in the U.S. Navy on his 18th birthday, and became the youngest aviator in the U.S. Navy at the time. He served until the end of the war, then attended Yale University. Graduating in 1948, he moved his family to West Texas and entered the oil business, becoming a millionaire by the age of 40.
He became involved in politics soon after founding his own oil company, serving as a member of the House of Representatives and Director of Central Intelligence, among other positions. He failed to win the Republican nomination for President in 1980, but was chosen by party nominee Ronald Reagan to be his running mate, and the two were elected. During his tenure, Bush headed administration task forces on deregulation and fighting the "War on Drugs".
In 1988, Bush ran a successful campaign to succeed Reagan as President, defeating Democratic opponent Michael Dukakis. Foreign policy drove the Bush presidency: military operations were conducted in Panama and the Persian Gulf; the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, and the Soviet Union dissolved two years later. Domestically, Bush and after a struggle with Congress, signed an increase in taxes that Congress had passed. In the wake of a weak recovery from an economic recession, along with continuing budget deficits, he lost the 1992 presidential election to Democrat Bill Clinton.
Bush left office in 1993. His presidential library was dedicated in 1997, and he has been active—often alongside Bill Clinton—in various humanitarian activities. Bush's eldest son, George W. Bush, later served as the 46th Governor of Texas (1995–2000) and as the 43rd President of the United States (2001–2009), becoming one of only two presidents—the other being John Quincy Adams—to be the son of a former president. His second son, Jeb Bush, served as the 43rd Governor of Florida (1999–2007).