Former U.S. President George H.W. Bush remained hospitalized on Thursday near his home in Houston. He was taken to the hospital after experiencing shortness of breath and he was in “great spirits,” said his spokesman.
Bush, 90, was taken to the Houston Methodist Hospital by ambulance on Tuesday. Spokesman Jim McGrath said that the 41st President’s prognosis was positive and that he remained in the hospital just as a precaution.
McGrath said on Thursday in an emailed statement that “President Bush had another terrific day and is in great spirits”. Bush’s wife Barbara Bush, his son Neil and daughter-in-law Maria visited the former president, McGrath said.
“He asked that his sincere wishes for a very Merry Christmas be extended to one and all,” McGrath said, adding that Bush will remain at the hospital till Thursday evening.
Bush was admitted to the same hospital two years ago. Bush, who was the President from 1989 to 1993, was admitted for the treatment of bronchitis and related ailments, then.
Bush spent seven weeks recovering and became so ill that one point he was believed to be near death.
The former Republican President, who was very active once, now suffers from Parkinson’s disease and cannot use his legs. However, he celebrated his 90th birthday on June 12th by skydiving in Kennebunkport, Maine, with the help of Army’s Golden Knight parachute team. He celebrated his 75th, 80th and 85th birthdays the same way.
His family has announced publicly that the former President was no longer able to walk unassisted. This could be frustrating for a man who enjoyed an active lifestyle of golf, jogging, fishing and power walks on the beach near his summer home in Maine.
His eldest son, former President George W. Bush, published a best-selling book about his father, this year. The book is titled “41 – A Portrait of My Father.” Bush started experiencing various health problems in 1991 when, as president, he was hospitalized with an irregular heartbeat.
Doctors diagnosed him as having Graves Disease, a thyroid condition. His wife also had the same problem, by coincidence. In February 2000, when he was attending a reception in Naples, Fla, he had the recurrence of irregular heartbeat. He had to spend the night in the hospital, but smiled and joked with reporters the very next day.
Most recently, he appeared seated in a wheelchair at an event in November at Texas A&M University with his son, former President George W. Bush.