This was the passage on the front of the program for Mrs. Bush's funeral in Houston,Texas April 21,2018. I was an invited guest to the private service that included all of the Bush family, President and Mrs. Obama, President and Mrs. Clinton, Mrs Trump and President and Mrs. Laura Bush. What a wonderful celebration of her life. Jeb Bush, one of her sons spoke and talked with humor about how Mrs. Bush was a great teacher but that her children weren't always the best students.
I did many media interviews showing my White House photos and telling stories about Mrs. Bush. I did break down and cry in one interview with KVUE in Austin, Texas. Fox News had me as a guest on Harris Faulkner's show, with Dana Perino and with Shepard Smith.
The night before the funeral service there was a White House Staff reunion which was great fun to catch up with former colleagues and to share Barbara Bush stories.
One of my favorite stories about Barbara Bush happened on my first day of work. I started with Vice President Bush in Dec 1983. My first day on the job the Vice President and Mrs. Bush were in South Florida. I went to the location where they were staying. The Vice President came out to greet me and took me inside to meet Mrs. Bush. She invited me to join them for breakfast. That was my first meeting with her. Later that day in Miami, Jeb Bush brought his new son Jeb Jr. by the hotel suite to meet his Grandfather for the first time. I took a few photos of Vice President Bush playing and hugging on his new grandson. A few weeks later I received a note from Mrs. Bush telling me how much she loved the photos. She said in her note. "As long as you take good photos of my grandchildren, you can go anywhere and do what ever you want." From that point on I was good to go.
On another occasion I was at their home in Kennebunkport where I photographed the daily morning CIA briefing. One morning during the briefing after I took a few photos, the President invited me to have breakfast with him while the briefing was going on. I realized I was hearing things I didn't need or want to know so I rushed out of there to give the President his privacy. The next day he invited me to join him again. I said no that I was fine. He invited me to go have breakfast any way so I went inside to their kitchen. I was having breakfast when Barbara Bush walked in. We greeted. President Bush finished his meeting, came in and invited me to go fishing. We went, got back around noon and he decided to take a nap but invited me to stay and have lunch. So there I was eating lunch when who walks in, Barbara Bush. She said, "Dave, I've only seen you twice today and both times you've been eating my food." My response was, "So what's for dinner?" Thankfully, I survived the "Enforcer" as she was often called by her children.