George H.W. Bush's Likely Funeral Plans

Former president George H.W. Bush passed away Friday night, leaving behind a life of service and love for family and country. Though news of the late president's death are still new to the country and the world, planning for his funeral and all the details surrounding it may somewhat already be in place.

It's only been seven months since the 41st President of the United States buried his late wife of 73 years, Barbara. If the April burial of Barbara was any indication, there might be a blueprint for how and where it might happen. The only question now would be, when?

George and Barbara weren't necessarily joined at the hip, but they certainly seemed joined at the soul. This is shown through their letters, their children and their library. And if anyone who knew them, especially the Texans and those who knew Barbara, these two Americans would would live together forever. However, there might be added days in the burial process for George because, well, he was president.

First, there will be Texas memorial services in Houston and Midland, because these are where he made his marks in Texas. There will probably be services at Yale University, where Bush attended and played baseball.

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As a former president, he will most likely lie in State in Washington, D.C., like former major dignitaries, including presidents, senators and Supreme Court justices.

From the House of Representatives history page, here is the definition of who lies "in honor" in America.

"Since Henry Clay in 1852, the U.S. Capitol Rotunda has been used as a place to pay tribute to the Nation's most distinguished citizens. Made available for public viewing in the Rotunda, persons who have "lain in state" traditionally have been American statesmen and military leaders, including 11 U.S. Presidents. In 1998, to recognize two Capitol Police officers who died in the line of duty, Congress granted use of the Rotunda for their caskets to "lie in honor.""

This means Bush 41 will probably lie in state. The most recent people to lie in state include former senator John McCain, Rev. Billy Graham, President Gerald Ford, Rosa Parks and President Ronald Reagan. Here's the complete list of those lain in Rotunda.

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As for the Texas service, it's expected that Bush's service will be similar to that of Barbara's. It started with a public viewing at St. Martin's Church in Houston, close to their River Oaks home. Of course, there was a heavy security presence and a need to park at a remote site and ride a shuttle to and from the church.

Barbara Bush had a private viewing at a local funeral home in Houston, and then there was the funeral at St. Martin's.

Barbara's funeral was a star-studded, invitation-only affair at St. Martin's Church, and her husband's will most likely be even more extravagant, although it wasn't George's style.

Then there's the list of who will speak at his funeral? The top of the list certainly starts with his political sons Jeb and George W., and his long-time spokespeople. If they spoke at Barbara's funeral, then why not his? There are his grandchildren — George P., Jenna and Barbara. There are folks like James Baker, Karl Rove and others who have known him a long time. And then there's Barack Obama, who met with the late Mr. Bush just this week at an engagement in Houston.

And finally, there's Bill Clinton, who defeated Bush to become the 42nd President. Their legacy wasn't defined by their campaigns against each other, but rather their unity in coordinating efforts to overcome natural disasters, whether nationally in hurricane relief or worldwide during the devastating tsunami relief efforts.

Expected attendees will be select family members from the Kennedys to the Trumps, and every major political name in between, especially Nixons, Reagans, Clintons, Obamas, the entire Bush family and non-presidential names, and those close to the Bushes like Condoleeza Rice, Chuck Norris and a score of other Texans and Americans.

Should things play out like Barbara's funeral, then the procession will leave St. Martin's, weave its way through Memorial Park, where George loved to jog, up U.S. Highway 290 to Cypress and Hempstead, and then north on State Highway 6 through Navasota until it reaches College Station, where it would detour to the Bush Presidential Library for his final resting place — next to Barbara and their long-lost daughter, Robin, who died when she was 4.

George H.W. Bush's Likely Funeral Plans | U.S.