Former US President George Bush Snr has died

George HW Bush has died at the age of 94.

George Herbert Walker Bush was a World War II naval aviator, a Texas oil pioneer and the 41st President of the United States.

He died on Saturday (NZ time) and is survived by his five children, 17 grandchildren, eight great grandchildren, and two siblings.

In a statement, his son and 43rd President of the United States, George W. Bush said the family were saddened to announce his father's death.

"George HW Bush was a man of the highest character and the best dad a son or daughter could ask for. The entire Bush family is deeply grateful for 41's life and love, for the compassion of those who have cared and prayed for Dad, and for the condolences of our friends and fellow citizens."

Mr Bush Snr survived being shot down over the Pacific, led the CIA and spent eight years as Vice President to Ronald Reagan.

He was elected as President in 1988 and served until 1993. Mr Bush Snr, a Republican, was defeated in his bid for a second term by Democrat Bill Clinton.

His wife, Barbara, died at the age of 92 in April.

President Donald Trump and current First Lady, Melania Trump, said they joined with a grieving nation to mourn his loss.

"President Bush always found a way to set the bar higher...with sound judgement, common sense, and unflappable leadership, President Bush guided our Nation."

President Barack Obama said America has "lost a patriot and a humble servant".

"George HW Bush's life is a testament to the notion that public service is a noble, joyous calling. And he did tremendous good along the journey."

President Obama noted reducing the "scourge of nuclear weapons" and working to end the Cold War "without firing a shot" as among his greatest successes.

United States Ambassador to New Zealand, Scott Brown, also sent his sympathies to the family and expressed his admiration for the former President.

"I'm deeply saddened by the passing of President Bush, a veteran, leader and statesman. I am grateful to his life of service to our country," he tweeted.



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