As with the other 4 Presidential Libraries that we have visited, there is more than you can read, listen, and see in 3 or 4 hours. George Bush has lead an interesting life going from one of the youngest combat pilots in the US Navy to President of the United States. In between he left a fairly comfortable life in New England after graduating from Yale to move his family to Texas to get involved with the booming oil industry. Eventually he took a gamble and started an oil company that was successful and eventually deployed the first 3-legged oil platform on the Gulf Coast. Congressman, UN Ambassador, CIA Director, and Vice President before being elected to one term as President. We ran out of time for the tour about the time of Desert Storm, a time when the people of the US finally overcame the shadow of the Vietnam War.
We left the museum which is located on the Texas A&M campus and drove by the football stadium. It’s quite an impressive structure and rivals any of the NFL stadiums except maybe Jerry World in Arlington. Outside the stadium is a sculpture called the “War Hymn Monument” commemorating the famed 12th Man. The tradition of the Twelfth Man was born in January 1922, when an underdog Aggie team was playing Centre College, then the nation's top ranked team. The Aggies were getting physically beaten and were losing the limited reserve players so the coach called out of the stands a former football player to suit up and stand ready in case he was needed. A&M won the game, and the "12th man” wasn’t needed. He stood ready on the sidelines. Over the years the student body became the 12th Man and they stand during the entire game to show their support for the team. The “War hym” is a song the students sing and at the end they lock arms and sway to the chorus. I hope I got the story right, I wouldn’t want to offend any Aggies. This week was a sad one for the University as the former Athletic Director, John David Crow, died and there was a celebration of life ceremony on campus. He played football at A&M and I remember him playing professionally for the Cardinals (Chicago and St. Louis) and 49ers.
We’ll be moving on tomorrow to Escapee’s Rainbows End in Livingston, for a visit with Rudy and Linda. Stay tuned.