Things to know about the funeral services for George H.W. Bush

  • George H.W. Bush was president from 1989 to 1993. He died Friday in Houston at age 94
  • He will be buried next to wife, Barbara, and their daughter, Robin, who died in 1953
PUBLISHED : Monday, 03 December, 2018, 2:48pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 04 December, 2018, 1:07pm

Former US president George H.W. Bush will be honoured during several public and private events in Houston and Washington before his burial Thursday in Texas.

Four days of events for Bush, who died Friday at age 94, include a state funeral at Washington’s National Cathedral and a private service at his long-time church in Houston.

He will be buried next to wife, Barbara, and their daughter, Robin, who died in 1953.

Here are details about the events:

Transport from Houston to Washington

Bush’s body will be transported by a motorcade Monday morning from a Houston funeral home to Ellington Field Joint Reserve Base, a Texas Air National Guard base. The casket will be loaded onto a plane during a departure ceremony expected to start at 10:30am CST and flown to Joint Base Andrews in Maryland.

Relatives accompanying the casket will include his sons, former president George W. Bush and Neil Bush, along with members of their immediate families. The rest of the Bush family is expected to be at Joint Base Andrews when the body arrives.

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State funeral in Washington

In Washington, Bush will lie in state in the rotunda of the US Capitol from Monday at 7:30pm EST until Wednesday at 8:45am EST. His casket will be transported by motorcade Wednesday morning to the National Cathedral, where a state funeral will be held at 11am EST.

US President Donald Trump has indicated he and first lady Melania Trump will attend the state funeral.

Trump has said he plans to designate Wednesday as a national day of mourning.

Return to Houston

Following the service at the National Cathedral, Bush will be flown to Houston on Wednesday with a scheduled arrival of around 4:30pm CST. His body will be transported by motorcade to St. Martin’s Episcopal Church, where he and his wife regularly worshipped.

A public viewing of Bush’s casket will be held at the church from 6:45pm CST on Wednesday until 6am CST on Thursday.

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On Thursday, a private funeral service with about 1,200 invited guests will be held at the church starting at 10am CST.

After the hour-long service, a motorcade will transport Bush’s casket to a railway station north of Houston, near the international airport named after Bush.

A ceremony will be held at the railway station as Bush’s casket is loaded onto a Union Pacific train. The train will take about 2½ hours to travel to the city of College Station, home to Bush’s presidential library at Texas A&M University.

The locomotive has been painted the colours of the Air Force One plane used during his presidency and bears the number “4141” in honour of the 41st president.

Burial in College Station

The train is expected to arrive in College Station on Thursday around 3:45pm CST. Bush’s casket will then be transported by motorcade to the presidential library, where he will be buried at the gated family plot near his wife and their daughter Robin, who died of leukaemia at age 3.

Barbara Bush died on April 17 at their Houston home. The couple was married for 73 years, longer than any other US presidential couple.

Ceremonies at the presidential library will include a missing man formation flyover. The casket will then be rolled along a path through woods, over a bridge and over a creek for burial during a private graveside service with Bush’s family.