Today show correspondent Jenna Bush Hager paid a special online tribute to her grandfather George H.W.Bush on Saturday, hours after his death was announced.
The former President died at age 94 on Friday, seven months after his wife Barbara Bush passed away at age 92.
Jenna, one of the former U.S. leader’s son and fellow former President George W. Bushand Laura Bush‘s twin daughters, shared on Instagram sweet throwback photos of her and her sister, also named Barbara Bush, with their grandfather.
“Waking up missing this giant of a man who gave me everything,” wrote Jenna, 37. “He taught me and my family about service, family, decency, the power of gentle words and a beautiful heart. I will miss him desperately but so happy he and my Grandmother are back together.”
Jenna also shared a caricature of the two reunited in Heaven, along with their late daughter Pauline Robinson “Robin” Bush, their first girl and the second-eldest of their six children, who died of leukemia at age 3 in 1953.
“I had the opportunity to talk with my grandpa about the afterlife,” she continued. “This is what he said: He answered without any hesitation. ‘Yes, I think about it. I used to be afraid. I used to be scared of dying. I used to worry about death. But now in some ways I look forward to it.’ And I started crying.”
“I managed to choke out, ‘Well, why? What do you look forward to?'” Jenna wrote. “And he said, ‘Well, when I die, I’m going to be reunited with these people that I’ve lost.’ And I asked who he hoped to see. He replied, I hope I see Robin, and I hope I see my mom. I haven’t yet figured it out if it will be Robin as the three year old that she was, this kind of chubby, vivacious child or if she’ll come as a middle-aged woman, an older woman.’ And then he said, ‘I hope she’s the three-year-old.'”
“Robin was the daughter this giant of a man lost years before to leukemia,” Jenna said. “The little girl he held tightly: who spoke the phrase I have heard Gampy repeat for my entire life, forever knitting Robin’s voice into the tightly woven fabric of our family: ‘I love you more than tongue can tell.'”
George W. Bush also shared an online Instagram tribute, with his own photo of his parents walking to Air Force One.
“Jeb, Neil, Marvin, Doro, and I are saddened to announce that after 94 remarkable years, our dear Dad has died,” he wrote. “George H. W. Bush was a man of the highest character and the best dad a son or daughter could ask for. The entire Bush family is deeply grateful for 41’s life and love, for the compassion of those who have cared and prayed for Dad, and for the condolences of our friends and fellow citizens.”