Bush 41 Stops by Namesake Carrier Before Commissioning

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

NORFOLK, Va. -- Former President George H.W. Bush made an unexpected visit to his namesake aircraft carrier a day before the vessel's commissioning in Virginia.

Bush says he's very excited and emotional and "very proud of the kids on the ship."

The $6.2 billion warship is the 10th and final in the Nimitz class of nuclear-powered aircraft carriers. They are the largest warships in the world.

An estimated 20,000 dignitaries and guests are expected at its commissioning Saturday at Naval Station Norfolk, including the 41st president's son, President George W. Bush.

The commanding officer says the crew is especially "fired up" because of Bush's Naval background. He joined on his 18th birthday: June 12, 1942.

Bush is the first U.S. president to visit a namesake carrier.

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