Former First Lady Barbara Bush is in failing health and has decided not to seek any additional medical treatment.
The Bush Family spokesman made the announcement Sunday afternoon. The 92-year-old was admitted to the hospital last week. She recently suffered from congestive heart failure, among other illnesses.
Bush is now back at home in Texas with her family and her focus is on "comfort care."
Both Texas and national leaders are reacted to this news. The White House released a statement saying, "The President's and First Lady's prayers are with all of the Bush family during this time.”
Governor Greg Abbott tweeted Sunday:
Here’s to Barbara Bush—an American icon and Texas legend. Our prayers are with you. pic.twitter.com/N7i5OJRPGw— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) April 15, 2018
George H. W. Bush, released a statement soon after that announcement, stating, "It will not surprise those who knew her that Barbara Bush has been a rock in the face of her failing health."
Families visited the George W. Bush Presidential Library in Dallas Sunday, admiring her service as both first lady and as the mother of a president, one of only two first ladies to be both.
“She's supportive of her family. She sacrificed for her family. She encouraged her family. In my opinion, she represents everything that her family is,” said Robert Kerr.
The director of the Presidential History Center at SMU knows Barbara personally and says she exudes empathy and warmth, while also being a powerful force politically. Jeff Engel recalls 92-year-old Barbara speaking out during the 2016 presidential primaries, saying she couldn't understand how a woman could vote for then-candidate Donald Trump.
"There's no mincing words with Mrs. Bush. You know exactly where you stand and she is more than willing to tell people exactly where you should stand," said Engel.
“I love the pearls, and I love the fact that she still has her white hair,” said library visitor Katie Heins.
“I love that she championed literacy. We have two little boys that love to read and it's an important thing that everyone learns how to read,” said visitor Jay Hubbs.
Mr. and Mrs. Bush have six children and they've been married longer than any presidential couple. Mr. Bush, himself, has had health issues in recent years. He was released from a Houston hospital this time last year after having pneumonia and chronic bronchitis.
The statement from his office Sunday goes on to say she's surrounded by her family and appreciates kinds wishes and prayers.
The Barbara Bush Foundation also put out a statement, saying, "Our thoughts and prayers are with our founder, Barbara Bush, and her family. She inspires us each day to continue working toward literacy for all."
Next weekend is the fifth anniversary of the George W. Bush Library. A representative for the library says he's not yet sure how this will affect their plans.
Notable people have been expressing their support for the Bush family since the announcement:
Karen and I are praying for Barbara Bush and the entire Bush family tonight.— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) April 16, 2018
I know the Bush family would appreciate our prayers with the announcement that former First Lady Barbara Bush, now 92 years old, is in failing health.https://t.co/t4pdowgGDx— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) April 15, 2018
Prayers going up for a woman of great faith, great strength, and an unwavering love of country. Our country is better because of former First Lady Barbara Bush ❤️🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/pewdIu2hjr— Nikki Haley (@nikkihaley) April 15, 2018
Keeping Barbara Bush and her family in my heart and prayers. I will never forget how kind she was to me on every occasion we met, and how fondly the White House staff always spoke of her.— Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) April 15, 2018
Barbara Bush is loved and admired across Texas and America, and we are all grateful for her unending contributions to our beloved state and nation. Our prayers are with her, President Bush, and the entire Bush family during this difficult time.— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) April 15, 2018
As always, Barbara Bush is a comfort to her friends & family teaching us all how to live full of faith, love & humor. Praying that she is comfortable & send love to President Bush & their family. https://t.co/Y02uohVFyD— Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi) April 15, 2018
Praying for former First Lady Barbara Bush and her family in this difficult time. She is a special woman, whose great faith and love for her country inspires us all.— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) April 15, 2018
My thoughts and prayers are with Mrs. Barbara Bush and the Bush Family. God bless you, Mrs. Bush, and may he hold you in the palm of his hand.— Condoleezza Rice (@CondoleezzaRice) April 16, 2018
First Lady Barbara Bush has touched lives around the world with her faith, grace, and humor. Sending my thoughts to the entire Bush family.— Rep. Joe Kennedy III (@RepJoeKennedy) April 15, 2018