In April, Barbara Bush died at the age of 92. Following her passing, stories began to emerge that perfectly highlighted how kind, compassionate and caring the former first lady truly was, and how beloved she was by those around her. But perhaps no story proved this sentiment more than the one of her real life romance with former President George Bush.
As Business Insider recently chronicled, Barbara and George met at a dance during Christmas vacation in 1942. At the time, the pair was just 16 and 17 years old, respectively. The couple dated for a year and a half before becoming engaged. However, their wedding would have to wait as George went on to serve the US Navy as a pilot in World War II.
However, it appeared that distance only made both their hearts grow fonder as the duo shared letters back and forth while George was away. Upon his return they married, and stayed together for 73 years, which made them the longest-married couple in presidential history, according to the Associated Press.
While the length of their marriage is remarkable enough, what is truly noteworthy is just how in love the pair stayed until the very end.
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According to Jenna Bush Hager, the couple’s granddaughter, George "still says, 'I love you Barbie' every night.”
Beyond a true love for one another, the pair also displayed a true and unabiding respect and admiration for the other. Of his wife, George once wrote, "I have climbed perhaps the highest mountain in the world, but even that cannot hold a candle to being Barbara's husband.”
And of her husband, Barbara wrote in her 1994 memoir that they are indeed "the two luckiest people in the world, and when all the dust is settled and all the crowds are gone, the things that matter are faith, family and friends. We have been inordinately blessed, and we know that."
She poignantly added, "George Bush knows how I feel. He is the hero... He is my hero."