A Letter from the White House

Way back in the last century, I was a journalist for the York County Coast Star. During that time, I wrote about the happenings within the villages of York, Maine. Often, I would begin my column with a commentary on something that happened in the world or within the town.

At that time, George and Barbara Bush were in the White House. Their local paper was the York County Coast Star. 

On several occasions, I wrote about the Bushes. Once, when the president had told everyone he disliked broccoli and later when 150 seniors at Wellesley College protested the fact that Mrs. Bush was to address the graduating class saying, "she is not the type of career woman the college is educating," because, while she attended Smith College, she did not graduate. She left to marry George and begin a family.

The broccoli column was a tongue-in-cheek lament on what would mothers across the nation do to inspire their kids to eat broccoli, now that it was known that the president disliked it. The other was written as a thank you to Mrs. Bush for standing up for mothers who worked from home raising children.

A friend suggested I send Mrs. Bush a copy of the articles, "just in case she didn't read them."  I did, more to get my friend off my back than because I believed she would get my letter.

Several weeks later, I received a large manila envelope in the mail. The return address was The White House. Stunned, I carefully opened it to find a note from Mrs. Bush with a handwritten message at the bottom.


Yesterday, was Mrs. Bush's funeral. She was lauded as a great wife, mother, and First Lady. I will always remember her grace under pressure, her calm in the face of chaos and her undying love of family.  She was a model for not only her family, but for families across the county and around the world. 

Mrs. Bush will remain one of my favorite people. I will treasure my letter from her and hope that my daughters and their daughters and sons will treasure it, also.  After all, it's not every day one gets a letter from the White House.

Blessings and prayers to the Bush family, their friends and all who knew and loved Barbara Bush. May your memories of her be balm during the days ahead. 


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