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George and Barbara Bush: A 73-year romance straight from the pages of a fairy tale

Junie Sihlangu
Apr 19, 2018
04:21 A.M.
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Barbara Bush’s death has probably hit her husband harder than anyone else. The couple met and fell in love when they were teenagers and had stayed together since.

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Even when George H. W. Bush went to war, the two never stopped writing each other love letters. Daily Mail reported that the couple had been together for 73-years when Barbara died on April 17, 2018.

Barbara died at the age of 92 on Tuesday. Her death came just a few days after she had been admitted to hospital for congestive heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

After going to the hospital, the former First Lady made the decision that she wouldn’t be getting any further medical treatment. She opted for home care to be with her husband and family. 

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Barbara and George began their lasting romance at a Christmas dance in Connecticut when they were teenagers.  They managed to have six children and fourteen grandchildren over the past years.

'I am still old and still in love with the man I married 72 years ago. George Bush has given me the world.’

Barbara Bush, Daily Mail, April 18, 2018

George was a naval aviator in training when they met. In his autobiography, he stated that he wasn’t someone who recalled what people wore, but on that day at the dance, he did.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

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The band was playing Glenn Miller songs and George asked a friend from Rye, New York if he knew the girl across the room in the green and red holiday dress. The friend introduced him to Barbara Pierce, a publisher's daughter from Rye.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

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At the time, she was studying at Ashley Hall finishing school in Charleston, South Carolina. She was in the area on a Christmas vacation.

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George immediately struck up a conversation with her. Their bond was so intense that they missed many dances while sitting and talking and getting to know one another.

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He returned to finish his education at Phillips Academy in Andover and she went back to school in Charleston. They kept their long-distance relationship going by writing each other letters.

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When George was in the Navy he proposed, and he and Barbara became officially engaged in August 1943. The couple got married at the First Presbyterian Church in Rye, New York before moving to Texas.

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The children that they had were namely: George W, Jeb, Neil, Marvin, Dorothy, and Robin. Robin tragically died from leukemia when she was just three years old, weeks before her fourth birthday.

Things became difficult for Barbara and her marriage when her husband began making a move into politics. Their love endured as she became his support in all his endeavors.

George remained grateful to have his wife by his side, both during his presidential campaign, and his four years in the White House. She was his closest confidante and the love of his life.

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