Goodbye President Bush

While millions watched the historic events downtown on the mall, I was privileged to be part of a much smaller ceremony at Andrews AFB sending President Bush off to Texas. The ceremony was private so as not to take away from Obama’s day, but very sweet and sentimental all the same. While I certainly didn’t agree with many of President Bush’s big ticket items when it came to his domestic agenda, as someone who was working on the Hill on September 11th and who lives down the street from the Pentagon, I’m very grateful that his dedication to protecting us did allow me to eventually return to life as usual after those intense days. While he enjoyed some of the highest and lowest approval ratings, I believe history will be more kind and agree with him that he accomplished his goals and kept us safe.

It was difficult to get any pictures worth posting of the speeches (the Cheney’s were there as well); they were on the edge of the hanger and back lit, plus there were tall people in front of me. But here are a few shots of George and Laura leaving on “Special Air Mission 28000”. The plane is only called Air Force One when the current President is aboard.

This plane is incredibly large, and so clean and shiny, as you’d expect from the military. The Bushes were joined on the flight by daughter Barbara, Bush 41 and Barbara, plus many of the President’s top advisors who were going home to Texas. This is just as they were pulling away.
Special Air Mission 28000.
After takeoff they came back around for a finally goodbye. A patriotic and awe-inspiring moment for sure. This also the last flight for the pilot who is retiring.
And one of the best parts of the day was – we were in a hanger the whole time and not out in the freezing cold and wind for all those hours like we expected to be! 🙂

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