- (Photo: AP / David J. Phillip)
George H.W. Bush, former President, shaved his head in solidarity with the son of one of his Secret Service members, Patrick. The 89-year-old saw that his security team had shaved their heads in support of the young boy, who is undergoing treatment for leukemia, and decided to do the same.
George H.W. Bush's office released pictures Wednesday of the two- the ex-Commander-in-Chief and 2-year-old Patrick are wearing adorable similar blue polo shirts- to bring attention to the child's plight. Bush posed in his wheelchair, which is his main method of mobility, while Patrick sat on his lap.
The 41st President noticed that his Secret Service agents, the Bush Protective Division, had all cut all their hair off in support of agent Jon's son, and shaved his head the same way. In a picture with the security detail, all 26 agents can be seen sporting their freshly hairless heads alongside Bush.
For Bush, the issue hits close to home: he and his wife Barbara lost their second child, 4-year-old daughter Robin, to leukemia nearly 60 years ago. A fund has been set up to help Patrick's family with their medical bills at PatricksPals.org, and the Bushes have already made a donation.
"Earlier this spring, Patrick was diagnosed with Leukemia. While his prognosis is very positive, there will be many years of treatment ahead," the website reads. "We are doing what we can to show our support and lend a helping hand to this amazing family and worthy cause."
Part of the effort is a motorcycle benefit run organized for Aug. 10 in Kennebunkport, Maine.
Former President Bush was also honored last week by President Obama for inspiring the Daily Points of Light Award, which has been given by the Points of Light Foundation since 1998. The celebration included the 5,000th award, given to retired couple Floyd Hammer and Kathy Hamilton, who founded nonprofit organization Outreach that delivered 232 million free meals to children worldwide.
"In times of tight budgets and some very tough problems, we know that the greatest resource we have is the limitless energy and ingenuity of our citizens," President Obama said during the East Room ceremony at the White House. "And when we harness that energy and create more opportunities for Americans to serve, we pay tribute to the extraordinary example set by President Bush."