“Mission complete. #Remembering41,” Jim McGrath, the spokesperson for President and Mrs. George H.W. Bush, tweeted. The image to accompany that poignant tweet was one of a beautiful Labrador Retriever service dog named Sully laying next to the casket of the 41st President of the United States. The photograph has gained strong Internet traction, as you can imagine.
The loyalty of a dog and their human does die, as the image clearly depicts. Sully the dog was matched with former President Bush in June of 2018 when the dog was close to two years of age. Sully was a constant companion to Bush and kept him company after Bush’s wife, Barbara, passed away in April 2018.
The dog is named after the former airline pilot, Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger III, who brought a plane to a safe landing on the Hudson River in 2009.
Former President Bush welcomed the dog into his life the same day his friend and former President, Bill Clinton, paid him a visit to his Kennebunkport, Maine, home.
In addition to helping Bush get around due to having Parkinson’s disease and being in a motorized wheelchair, Sully helped Bush with his activities of daily living. He also has a hefty following on Instagram.
The dog will fly on Air Force One with Bush’s casket. He will then help other veterans at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
We salute you, Sully, on your service, and thank you for being a part of President George H.W. Bush’s life. Our deepest condolences to the Bush family.