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We will miss him dearly: Schwarzenegger pays glowing tribute to ‘dear friend’ George H.W. Bush

  • Bush appointed the Terminator star chairman of the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports in the 1990s
  • Former US president inspired the Great American Workout at the White House, says action star
PUBLISHED : Sunday, 02 December, 2018, 6:48pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 02 December, 2018, 6:48pm

Arnold Schwarzenegger has paid a glowing tribute to his “dear friend” as he joined a long list of celebrities who have saluted former president George H.W. Bush, who died on Friday, aged 94.

The seven-time Mr Olympia and action star hero built up a long and lasting friendship with the US president and the 71-year-old Austrian-born superstar pointed out that Bush helped revolutionise the fitness boom in the 1990s. Bush was also responsible for appointing Schwarzenegger chairman of the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports.

“President Bush has left us for one last flight but his destination isn’t unknown,” tweeted Schwarzenegger. “He’s flying into the arms of the love of his life, Barbara. This evening, each of us should take a minute to look up and offer him a silent thanks.”

The former governor of California said in his touching tribute that he enjoyed sledding with Bush at Camp David, while praising the former president for inspiring America to join “our fitness crusade” by hosting the Great American Workout with him on the White House lawn.

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“I will never forget the pride I felt the day he appointed me chairman of the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports. I loved to hear him surprise people with his wild side – explaining the pure joy he felt as he flew and jumped out of planes. I also loved to hear him explain his passion for this country – it was a true love that knew no petty boundaries or party lines,” said Schwarzenegger in his message.

“He taught me so much, but most of all, he taught me the power of serving a cause greater than yourself. I count myself lucky for many reasons; but for the opportunity to call George Bush a mentor, I can’t help but think I’m the luckiest man in America.”

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Schwarzenegger said Bush was “an inspiration to all Americans and we will miss him dearly”. “From the day he first put on his US navy flight suit and took off into the unknown, he always put his country first. He took on many jobs throughout his long career, and all shared one distinct trait: public service. His greatest legacy is that pure American spirit, that commitment to selflessness that drove him until the very end.”