As we mourn the passing of President George H.W. Bush, are you aware of his several connections to Minnesota?

Bush speaks to crowds
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

On this National Day of Mourning, we pay tribute to our nation's 41st president, George H.W. Bush, who passed away last weekend. His funeral will be held Wednesday at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.

Mr. Bush is probably most associated with the state of Texas, where he will be buried, and where he lived for many years. He was born in Massachusetts and also had a family home in Maine.

So what is his connection to Minnesota? Well, there are several. For the first, you have to go WAAAAAY back in time 77 years, back to when World War II was raging. According to this story, it was then-- back in 1942-- when an 18-year-old George Bush had just enlisted in the U.S. Navy and wound up learning to fly here in Minnesota.

Mr. Bush was assigned to the Naval Air Station in Minneapolis for preliminary flight training, the story noted. "That’s where I first took off in an airplane, where I first soloed, where I first flew at night,” Bush said in the story.

Another Bush connection to the Land of 10,000 Lakes was noted over the weekend by Twins' President Dave St. Peter on his Twitter page. It was 27 years ago when, as President, Mr. Bush welcomed the 1991 World Champion Minnesota Twins team to the White House to celebrate their victory over the Braves in that year's World Series.

And, of course, another Bush connection to Minnesota is one that happened right here in Rochester-- the Bush family's association with Mayo Clinic. As Mayo noted in this release, Barbara Bush served on Mayo's Board of Trustees from 1993 to 2001, and in 2017, the family set up the George H.W. Bush and Barbara Bush Scholarship, which is awarded to one student each year at the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine.

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