A picture surfaced on Sunday, 12/2/2018, of the late President George H. W. Bush’s service dog, ‘Sully’ lying beside his coffin in Houston along with the caption, “Mission Complete.” Many took to the media to say, “We just don’t deserve dogs.” Man’s best friend has never been more witnessed than in this moving photo. Sully can be seen in the photo as he lay with head on paw as if he was in mourning. Lying with his master until the end.
Sully was matched to Bush in June of this year, at the age of 2. He is named after former airline pilot Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger III, who safely landed a plane on the Hudson River in 2009.
Bush, a Republican, welcomed “the newest member of our family” the same day he received a visit from a friend and onetime political adversary, Bill Clinton, at his home in Kennebunkport, Maine. The occasion was also distinguished by a sartorial salute made by Bush to his successor. He wore a pair of socks imprinted with Clinton’s face.
Parkinson’s disease confined the former president to a wheelchair or motorized scooter in the final years of his life. Among the services that Sully was able to perform for Bush were retrieving dropped items, opening and closing doors, pushing an emergency button and supporting him when standing.
The moving image also appeared on the Facebook page of America’s VetDogs, a service dog program that assists veterans, active-duty service members and first responders struggling with disabilities. The Labrador was raised by VetDogs, first through its prison puppy program that gives inmates the chance to teach animals the basic tasks of housebreaking and standardized commands, and then at the program’s campus in Smithtown, N.Y.
Mr. Bush, who served as the 41st US president between 1989 and 1993, died late on Friday at the age of 94.
Sully the dog will be traveling with the casket on the flight from Texas to Washington D.C. on Monday.
Mr. Bush’s body is due to lie in state this week ahead of a day of national mourning.
The coffin will be flown from Texas to DC on board Air Force One – temporarily renamed Special Air Mission 41, in homage to the late president – and then back on Wednesday, with Sully accompanying the body throughout.
Ref. bbcnews.com, washingtonpost.com, cnn.com
Photo courtesy of Jim McGrath/Twitter (Spokesperson for Mr. Bush)