Former US president George HW Bush dies aged 94

31 1992 US President George Bush speaks 01 November 1992 to a large group of supporters during a campaign stop at the Sikorsky Memorial Airport in Connecticut. J. DAVID AKE  AFP

Donald Trump, the disruptive, anti-establishment president who spent years deriding much of what George H.W. Bush stood for, set aside differences in politics and temperament Saturday to honor the iconic American and former president a day after his death. Not only was he the 41st President of the United States, he served as Vice President under Ronald Reagan for two terms, from 1981 to 1989, and his eldest son George Jnr also attained the White House as the 43rd President.

Despite achieving popularity ratings of 90%, Bush was accused of neglecting domestic affairs and was defeated by Bill Clinton in the 1992 election.

The senior Bush had a lifetime of public service before he became president - as a young Navy pilot in World War II, Texas congressman, Central Intelligence Agency director and faithful vice president to Ronald Reagan.

He is survived by sons George W. Bush (the 43rd president of the United States) and Jeb Bush (ex-governor of Florida).

But Mr Bush will perhaps be best remembered as the commander-in-chief who sanctioned the Gulf War, codenamed Operation Desert Storm.

In August 2015, Trump tweeted a dig at the presidency of George H.W. Bush, writing: "The last thing we need is another Bush in the White House".

The magazine ended up only publishing images of Bush at work, but photographer Leonard McCombe also captured the balance of Bush's life-the home and family that he left behind when he went off to NY to the United Nations. U.S. Envoy to China.

As the last United States president to have served in World War II and the country's last Cold War leader, the end of Mr Bush's time in the White House marked the end of a political era.

"After seventy-three years of marriage, George and Barbara Bush are together again now, two points of light that never dimmed, two points of light that ignited countless others with their example".

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In April, he was admitted to a hospital intensive care unit with a blood infection, a week after the death of his wife of 73 years, Barbara.

"He loves A&M", said Warren Finch, director of the George H.W. Bush Library and Museum.

He lost his bid for re-election to Bill Clinton in a campaign in which businessman H. Ross Perot took nearly 19 percent of the vote as an independent candidate.

The elder Bush's cautious realpolitik would later be contrasted to his son's far more costly ambition to transform the Middle East, but "Bush 41" refused to weigh in on the debate, insisting he was proud of the presidency of "Bush 43".

"America has lost a patriot and humble servant in George Herbert Walker Bush".

In his later years he developed a form of Parkinson's disease and used a motorised scooter or a wheelchair for mobility.

The president and first lady Melania Trump added that Bush had "inspired generations of his fellow Americans to public service".

He flew combat missions from the aircraft carrier USS San Jacinto and won the Distinguished Flying Cross.

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