DSS Physical Security Specialist Richard Truman remembers President George H.W. Bush

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1st Sgt. Richard Truman (back left) stands at attention as first lady Barbara Bush and President George H.W. Bush exit Marine One on the south lawn of the White House, 1989.

DSS Physical Security Specialist Richard Truman remembers President George H.W. Bush

As the nation grieves the passing of 41st president, George H.W. Bush, DSS Physical Security Specialist Richard Truman took a moment to remember the president he served as crew chief of Marine One.

President George H.W. Bush shakes hands with 1st Sgt. Richard Truman, United States Maine Corps (Ret.) in the White House Oval Office, Oct. 1990.

“Serving President Bush was an honor and the highlight of my Marine Corps career and I am deeply saddened by his passing,” said Truman.

Truman accompanied President Bush on countless trips around the world and to the Presidential retreat at Camp David. “The President and first lady were the epitome of a loving couple and were friendly to everyone they met,” recalls Truman. “They always greeted me when boarding the aircraft.”

1st Sgt. Richard Truman stands at attention as first lady Barbara Bush and President George H.W. Bush exit Marine One on the south lawn of the White House, 1989.

Truman has many fond memories of his interactions with the first family. During Christmas 1989 at Camp David, President Bush joined Truman and his colleagues for a game of wollyball (volleyball played with a dodgeball) on the Camp David racquetball court.

President Bush hosted guests at Camp David One weekend and he took them on a tour of the Marine One hanger. The President complimented Truman on the cleanliness of Marine One and they shared a laugh about which cleaning supplies Truman used keep it so clean.

1st Sgt. Richard Truman stands at attention as President George H.W. Bush waves to the crowd as he exits Marine One on the south lawn of the White House, 1989.

“There were many fun moments during my service to the President, but I will never forget landing on the south lawn of the White House, at night, during Christmas season of 89, it was absolutely breathtaking,” recalls Truman.

“President Bush was indeed a member of the greatest generation, said Truman. “I wish him fair winds and following seas - until Valhalla, Semper Fidelis.”  

About the Author: Eric Weiner serves in the U.S. Department of State's Diplomatic Security Service.

Editor's Note: This entry also appears in the U.S. Department of State's publication on Medium.