LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - Wednesday marks a day of mourning for the United States’ 41st President George H.W. Bush.
3,000 people packed inside Washington National Cathedral to say goodbye to him today, but others around the country are remembering the small marks Bush left on their own communities. It’s no different in the Bush community of Laurel County.
The primary Presidential campaign came through Kentucky in the winter of 1988. E.R. Rudder shook hands with then-Vice President George Bush when he came through the small community that shared his name.
“I think part of that honor was that we were named Bush, and he was named Bush,” said Rudder who now works at the Bush Fire Department. “The thing that strikes me the most is that all say he was a genuinely good man."
In his 1988 campaign for the presidency Bush spoke right outside that small fire department and across from the community elementary school. You can imagine the spectacle for the dozens of school children there at the time.
Elizabeth Cupp was a second-grader then. She’s now the principal of a much newer Bush Elementary.
"I don't remember what he said, just that there was a really big positive energy and he was really nice,” Cupp said.
Those who witnessed Bush’s 1988 appearance in small-town Kentucky say he just seemed like one of them – an ordinary guy.
Bush returned to Laurel County to speak four years later when he was President.