George H.W. Bush has said that when he passed away, he hoped his daughter, Robin, would be the first person he saw in heaven.
Now, one viral and tear-jerking cartoon from the Clarion Ledger shows that reunion.
Bush died this week at the age of 94, prompting plenty of stories about the accomplishments of his long life. But many others also shared the personal aspects of the 41st president, including his lifetime of mourning for the daughter who died just before her fourth birthday. Pauline Robinson “Robin” Bush had been diagnosed with leukemia as a toddler and the condition quickly worsened. George and Barbara Bush brought their daughter home from the hospital to spend her final days with family, and they were by her side as she died.
In a 2016 interview, George and wife Barbara said they still thought about Robin all the time.
“Robin to me is a joy. She’s like an angel to me, and she’s not a sadness or a sorrow,” Barbara said.
The story resonated with Marshall Ramsey, the noted editorial cartoonist for the Jackson Clarion-Ledger in Mississippi. Ramsey, who created a viral cartoon honoring Barbara when she died earlier this year, went to work as soon as his wife told him that George H.W. Bush had passed away.
Ramsey drew an image of George H.W. Bush arriving in heaven by the plane he flew in World War II, finding Barbara and Robin waiting for him.
“I drew it as quickly as I could and then posted it on social media,” Ramsey told the Washington Post. “It seems like I’ve [drawn] so many obituary cartoons this year — 2018 has been cruel. But since the last one was so well-received by the Bush family and by parents who had lost children, I wanted to make sure this one was right.”
Godspeed President Bush. This is the bookend to the Barbara Bush cartoon from April. My thoughts are with the Bush family tonight. On a personal note, he was the first president I drew as a cartoonist (I began my career in 1988.) @JennaBushHager #presidentBush #rip #georgehwbush pic.twitter.com/lnBXCHgCnw— Marshall Ramsey (@MarshallRamsey) December 1, 2018
The cartoon quickly went viral, with many sharing it across social media and praising its simple but powerful tribute to the 41st president and his family. Even Jenna Bush Hager, granddaughter of George and Barbara, shared the cartoon on Facebook.
“This brought me such comfort this morning,” she wrote.
Jenna added that she had a conversation with her grandfather about the afterlife and he shared that he wasn’t afraid of dying but now actually looked forward to it because he would be “reunited with these people that I’ve lost.” When Jenna asked George H.W. Bush who he was hoping to see, he told her Robin and Barbara.