George H.W. Bush’s remains fly from Texas to D.C. on ‘Special Air Mission 41’ for funeral

The remains of the late U.S. President George H.W. Bush will begin a final journey on Monday, traveling from Texas back to America’s capital city where he served four years in Congress, one at the helm of the CIA, eight as vice president and four in the White House.

Family and former staffers will hold a brief ceremony Monday at a Texas Air National Guard base outside Houston, putting his casket onto the Air Force One jet for a last trip to Washington.

Two of his sons, former President George W. Bush and Neil Bush, will accompany the body of the 41st president on the presidential Boeing 747, renamed ‘Special Air Mission 41’ for the flight, as it travels to Joint Base Andrews in the Maryland suburbs of Washington.

The remains of President Geroge H.W. Bush will travel from Texas to Washington, D.C. on Monday aboard Special Air Mission 41, the temporary callsign of the plane that serves as Air Force One when the current president is on board

The remains of President Geroge H.W. Bush will travel from Texas to Washington, D.C. on Monday aboard Special Air Mission 41, the temporary callsign of the plane that serves as Air Force One when the current president is on board

The remains of President Geroge H.W. Bush will travel from Texas to Washington, D.C. on Monday aboard Special Air Mission 41, the temporary callsign of the plane that serves as Air Force One when the current president is on board

Bush, the 41st U.S. president, died Friday and will be laid to rest this week following four days of ceremonies and memorials

Joint service members rehearsed on Sunday for the arrival of Bush's remains at the U.S. Capitol, where he will lie in state in the Rotunda

Joint service members rehearsed on Sunday for the arrival of Bush's remains at the U.S. Capitol, where he will lie in state in the Rotunda

Joint service members rehearsed on Sunday for the arrival of Bush’s remains at the U.S. Capitol, where he will lie in state in the Rotunda

Bush will lie in state in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda from Monday through Wednesday, when a state funeral is scheduled at the National Cathedral.

A contingent of former Bush staff members now living in Texas will join the mourners leaving Houston on Monday morning.

After a public viewing at an Episcopal church in Houston, Bush’s casket will be placed on a Union Pacific train car and pulled 70 miles to the town of College Station, home of Texas A&M University, where his presidential library is located. 

Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses Grant, Franklin Roosevelt and Dwight Eisenhower were honored in the same way, traveling to their final resting places on trains that Americans lined up to see as they passed.

The locomotive chosen for his final journey was customized in Bush’s honor in 2005 and painted with the number ‘4141’ in his honor. He marveled at its unveiling that year and asked to take it for a ride. 

On Thursday his casket will be in a train car with Plexiglas windows to allow people to see it during the trip. 

The 41st president died at his Houston home on Friday night, seven months after his wife Barbara passed away. 

After services in Washington, there will be another funeral in Houston on Thursday followed by burial at the Bush Presidential Library in College Station, Texas.

Bush will be laid to rest alongside his wife of 73 years and Robin Bush, their daughter who died of leukemia at age 3. 

After a public viewing at an Episcopal church in Houston, Bush's casket will be placed on a Union Pacific train car and pulled by this customized locomotive to his final resting place

After a public viewing at an Episcopal church in Houston, Bush's casket will be placed on a Union Pacific train car and pulled by this customized locomotive to his final resting place

After a public viewing at an Episcopal church in Houston, Bush’s casket will be placed on a Union Pacific train car and pulled by this customized locomotive to his final resting place

The 70-mile journey to College Station, Texas will take about 2-1/2 hours on Thursday; College Station is home to Texas A&M University, where Bush's presidential library and his family burial plot are located 

The 70-mile journey to College Station, Texas will take about 2-1/2 hours on Thursday; College Station is home to Texas A&M University, where Bush's presidential library and his family burial plot are located 

The 70-mile journey to College Station, Texas will take about 2-1/2 hours on Thursday; College Station is home to Texas A&M University, where Bush’s presidential library and his family burial plot are located 

The 41st President will be carried to his final rest wearing socks that pay tribute to his lifetime of service, starting as an 18-year-old naval aviator; Bush was known in his later years for wearing colorful novelty socks at public events

The 41st President will be carried to his final rest wearing socks that pay tribute to his lifetime of service, starting as an 18-year-old naval aviator; Bush was known in his later years for wearing colorful novelty socks at public events

The 41st President will be carried to his final rest wearing socks that pay tribute to his lifetime of service, starting as an 18-year-old naval aviator; Bush was known in his later years for wearing colorful novelty socks at public events

Officials gathered Monday morning outside the George H. Lewis Funeral Home as they prepared for the departure ceremony

Officials gathered Monday morning outside the George H. Lewis Funeral Home as they prepared for the departure ceremony

Officials gathered Monday morning outside the George H. Lewis Funeral Home as they prepared for the departure ceremony

The U.S. flag above the White House flew at half-staff in Bush's honor on Monday, along with flags at all other federal buildings

The U.S. flag above the White House flew at half-staff in Bush's honor on Monday, along with flags at all other federal buildings

The U.S. flag above the White House flew at half-staff in Bush’s honor on Monday, along with flags at all other federal buildings

Bush served two terms as vice president under fellow Republican President Ronald Reagan before winning his own White House term from 1989 to 1993.  

His time in office saw the end of the Cold War. Bush also presided over the United States’ routing of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein’s army in the 1991 Gulf War.

He failed to win a second term after breaking a ‘no new taxes’ pledge.

Remembrances to George H.W. Bush and Barbara Bush sprang up over the weekend in the neighborhood where he made his home, at a memorial in a city park, and at the Houston airport named in his honor.

FOUR DAYS OF CEREMONIES DURING FUNERAL WEEK FOR PRESIDENT GEORGE H.W. BUSH 

Former President George H.W. Bush will be honored during several public and private events in Houston and Washington before his burial Thursday in Texas. 

Four days of events for Bush, who died Friday at age 94, include a state funeral at Washington’s National Cathedral, a private service at his longtime church in Houston and public viewings in both cities. He will be buried next to his wife Barbara and their daughter Robin who died in 1953.

TRANSPORT FROM HOUSTON TO WASHINGTON

Bush’s body will be transported by a motorcade Monday morning from a Houston funeral home to Ellington Field Joint Reserve Base, a Texas Air National Guard base. The casket will be loaded onto a plane during a departure ceremony scheduled to start at 10:30 a.m. CST and flown to Joint Base Andrews in Maryland.

Relatives accompanying the casket will include his sons, former President George W. Bush and Neil Bush, along with members of their immediate families. The rest of the Bush family is expected to be at Joint Base Andrews when the body arrives.

Houston will host a public tribute to Bush on Monday night. Mayor Sylvester Turner has urged attendees to wear colorful socks, a nod to the former president’s fondness for sporting loud socks often emblazoned with unusual patterns during public events.

Bush spokesman Jim McGrath tweeted Monday that Bush will be laid to rest wearing gray socks honoring his days as a naval aviator.

STATE FUNERAL IN WASHINGTON

In Washington, Bush will lie in state in the rotunda of the U.S. Capitol from Monday at 7:30 p.m. EST until Wednesday at 8:45 a.m. EST. His casket will be transported by motorcade Wednesday morning to the National Cathedral, where a state funeral will be held at 11 a.m. EST. President Donald Trump, who ordered federal offices closed on Wednesday for a national day of mourning, is to attend with first lady Melania Trump.

RETURN TO HOUSTON

Following the service at the National Cathedral, Bush will be flown to Houston on Wednesday with a scheduled arrival of around 4:30 p.m. CST. His body will be transported by motorcade to St. Martin’s Episcopal Church, where he and his wife regularly worshipped. A public viewing of Bush’s casket will be held at the church from 6:45 p.m. CST on Wednesday until 6 a.m. CST on Thursday.

On Thursday, a private funeral service with about 1,200 invited guests will be held at the church starting at 10 a.m. CST. After the hour-long service, a motorcade will transport Bush’s casket to a train station north of Houston, near the international airport named after Bush.

A ceremony will be held at the train station as Bush’s casket is loaded onto a Union Pacific train. The train will take about 2½ hours to travel roughly 70 miles (113 kilometers) to the city of College Station, home to Bush’s presidential library at Texas A&M University.

The locomotive has been painted the colors of the Air Force One plane used during Bush’s presidency and bears the number “4141” in honor of the 41st president. The casket will be in a car with Plexiglas windows to allow people to see it during the trip, according to family spokesman Jim McGrath.

BURIAL IN COLLEGE STATION

The train is scheduled to arrive in College Station on Thursday around 3:45 p.m. CST. Bush’s casket will then be transported by motorcade to the presidential library, where he will be buried at the gated family plot near his wife and their daughter Robin, who died of leukemia at age 3. Barbara Bush died on April 17 at their Houston home. The couple was married for 73 years , longer than any other U.S. presidential couple.

Ceremonies at the presidential library will include a missing man formation flyover. The casket will then be rolled along a path through woods, over a bridge and over a creek for burial during a private graveside service with Bush’s family.

 

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