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Well Done – Portraits Of Courage

When people retire, going from being very engaged and busy with an active full life, to suddenly having no where you have to be and nothing you have to do can be a big shock.  So retired people often travel, play golf, spend time with grandchildren, or take up a hobby.  Taking up a “hobby” is precisely what the 43rd President of the United States, George W. Bush, has done…he has taken up painting portraits.  And not just any portraits either.  It most certainly must have been a shock to one day be the leader of the free world with all the decisions and demands and responsibility associated with that job, and the next day, have no where you have to be and no one clamoring for your next decision.

“People ask me, ‘Do you miss being president?’ The answer is not really,” Bush told NBC’s Today show in an interview. “But I miss saluting people who have volunteered to wear the uniform.”  So it was out of respect for the men and women who have sacrificed to serve their country in our military, the ones who have come home with injuries visible and invisible alike, that the former Commander -in-Chief decided to take on a project to honor their service and their lives.

He decided to take up painting because he read that Sir Winston Churchill had himself begun to paint later in life, and President Bush, an admirer of Churchill thought “if this guy can paint, I can paint.”

President Bush painting. Photo by Grant Miller

Portraits Of Courage: A Commander-In-Chief’s Tribute to America’s Warriors is a collection 66 portraits and stories by President George W. Bush honoring the sacrifice and courage of America’s military veterans.  It is a tribute to all who have served, by showcasing 66 men and women who wore the uniform and served their country with honor.

The portraits will also be on display from now through October 1, 2017 at the George W. Bush Presidential Center on the SMU campus in Dallas, Texas.  The proceeds from the book sales will go towards helping veterans reenter civilian life and in giving help to those who need help finding work.

“This is hard for many people to understand, but when you go to Walter Reed and a soldier looks at you who’s lost his legs and says, I’d do it again, or you ride mountain bikes with these troops that — some of whom lost a leg, who went back into combat, or a mother whose son lost her life and said, I just want you to know, my son died doing what he wanted to do, it lifts your spirit. It’s amazing.  And hopefully, my art is able to capture how amazing these people are.”

It is President Bush’s desire that these stories of courage and resilience will honor our men and women in uniform, highlight their family and caregivers who bear the burden of their sacrifice, and help Americans understand how we can support our veterans and empower them to succeed.  The book is now available at, at Barnes and Noble, and at local book stores.

Doing something to help support those who have given so much can be nothing short of pure joy, a token of our love and respect, and evidence of a very, very grateful and abundant life.  So to “Bush 43” we say…..Well Done… Thank you Mr. President for the opportunity to buy this book and join you in supporting and honoring our veterans. Well Done!!!




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One Comment
  1. Wendy #

    He and Laura host a barbeque every year for wounded warriors and he rides with them over tough hilly terrain. He truly loves the soldiers, sailors and marines who have served, wounded or not. I believe he was a most caring president.

    March 7, 2017

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