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Former first lady Barbara Bush dies at 92

Wife of President George H.W. Bush suffered from COPD

HOUSTON – Former first lady Barbara Bush, wife of President George H.W. Bush, has died at the age of 92.

Bush suffered from congestive heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, also known as COPD, for some time now, Houston’s KPRC reports. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, congestive heart failure means the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs.

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Remembering former first lady Barbara Bush

Former first lady Barbara Bush has died at age 92. Our thoughts and prayers are with the president and their family during this time. Tune in to KPRC2's special coverage now. Story: http://bit.ly/2JSvcgM

Posted by KPRC2 / Click2Houston on Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Most recently, she was admitted to Houston Methodist Hospital on Good Friday suffering from shortness of breath, CNN reports. She was doing better and had been released earlier this past week, but started to get worse in the past couple of days.

She and President Bush were married for more than 73 years. They were the longest married presidential couple in the nation’s history.

She is also the only woman to have been alive during the presidencies of her husband and her son, President George W. Bush.

Barbara Bush Fast Facts

  • Birth date: June 8, 1925
  • Birth place: New York, New York
  • Birth name: Barbara Pierce
  • Father: Marvin Pierce, publisher
  • Mother: Pauline (Robinson) Pierce
  • Marriage: George H. W. Bush (January 6, 1945-present)
  • Children: Dorothy, August 18, 1959; Marvin, October 22, 1956; Neil, January 22, 1955; John (Jeb), February 11, 1953; Pauline (Robin), December 20, 1949-October 1953 (died of leukemia); George, July 6, 1946
  • Education: Attended Smith College, 1943-1944

Other Facts:

Life member of the University Cancer Foundation Board of Visitors for the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas.

Ambassador at large of AmeriCares since 1986.

Is a relative of Franklin Pierce, the 14th president of the United States.

Timeline:

  • 1941 - Meets George H. W. Bush at a dance at the Round Hill Country Club in Greenwich, Connecticut.
  • 1943 - Has a summer job working in a nuts and bolts factory in Port Chester, New York.
  • January 6, 1945 - Marries Bush.
  • October 1953 - Daughter, Robin, dies of leukemia.
  • 1969-1971 - While living in Washington, Bush writes a monthly column called "Washington Scene" for Houston newspapers.
  • 1971 - Volunteers at Sloan-Kettering Memorial Hospital in New York.
  • January 20, 1980-January 20, 1989 - Second Lady of the United States.
  • 1984 - Writes "C. Fred's Story," about the Bush family's dog.
  • January 20, 1989-January 20, 1993 - First Lady of the United States.
  • 1989 - Founds the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy.
  • 1989 - Makes public that she was diagnosed in 1988 with Graves' disease, an autoimmune disease that commonly affects the thyroid.
  • 1990 - "Millie's Book" is published. Millie is the Bush family dog.
  • 1994 - "Barbara Bush: A Memoir" is published.
  • November 25, 2008 - Is hospitalized in Houston after complaining of stomach pains. She is diagnosed with a perforated ulcer and has surgery to correct the problem.
  • March 4, 2009 - Undergoes heart surgery.
  • March 27-31, 2010 - Is hospitalized for what doctors describe as a mild relapse of Graves' disease.
  • December 30, 2013-January 4, 2014 - Is treated for pneumonia at a hospital in Houston.
  • January 18, 2017 - Is hospitalized for bronchitis four days after her husband was admitted to the hospital to address "an acute respiratory problem stemming from pneumonia." The former first lady is discharged January 23.
  • April 15, 2018 - A source close to the Bush family tells CNN that Bush is in failing health and is being cared for at her home in Houston. Bush's office releases a statement, confirming after a "recent series of hospitalizations," she has decided against seeking additional medical help and will instead focus on "comfort care."

More on her life

Barbara Bush has been a fixture in Houston since moving back to Texas after leaving the White House in 1993, KPRC reports.

Many influential Houstonians have shared their thoughts on her legacy, including Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Jim McIngvale, better known as Mattress Mack, who rose to national prominence for his humanitarian work during Hurricane Harvey.

Read the former First Lady's obituary 

Barbara Bush's memorial service to be held Saturday in Houston