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Barbara Bush, wife of ex-President George H.W. Bush, in ‘failing…
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Barbara Bush, wife of ex-President George H.W. Bush, in ‘failing…

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Barbara Bush, the wife of former U.S. President George H.W. Bush, is in “failing health” and has decided to no longer seek medical treatment, the office of the ex-president said in a statement from Houston on Sunday.

FILE PHOTO – Former President George H.W. Bush (L), and former first lady Barbara Bush attend the Texas A&M University commencement ceremony in College Station, Texas, December 12, 2008. REUTERS/Larry Downing/File Photo

The former first lady, the statement said, “will instead focus on comfort care.” She is 92 years old.

The short statement did not indicate the nature of Bush’s illness but said that she had had a series of recent hospitalizations.

CNN reported that she was suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and congestive heart failure, and is being cared for at home, which Reuters has not yet confirmed.

As first lady from 1989 until the start of 1993, Bush was a popular national figure known for her sometimes blunt talk and self-deprecating wit.

“She is surrounded by a family she adores and appreciates the many kind messages and especially the prayers she is receiving,” the statement added.

Bush is the mother of former President George W. Bush, 71, the 43 U.S. president.

Her husband, the 41st U.S. president, is 93 years old.

Reporting by Richard Cowan; Editing by Sandra Maler

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