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President Gerald Ford''s Funeral is Today

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AGBF

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The first of President Gerald Ford's two Washington funerals will be held tonight. This one is being called the "State Funeral", although President Bush will not be attending it. He will be attend one Tuesday (?) at the National Cathedral and will speak there.

I know that other people my age will remember President and Mrs. Ford well, but I do not know if the younger Pricescope members will. They had quite an effect on some of us because, when he became President, no one had ever been as candid or as unpretentious as Mr. Ford and his wife. She was the first famous woman, the first woman in a position of prestige, who spoke openly about having cancer and, also, about using prescription drugs and alcohol. I think I also remember the Fords wanting to sleep in a double bed in the White House, although I could be mistaken. (To remember the Fords one must be a bit senior and, thus, subject to "senior moments".)

As all the news people are saying, President Ford also pardoned President Nixon. The Fords were, in my opinion, highly likeable people and Mr. Ford was a highly likeable President. What I have heard of the plans for the funeral, the desire to keep it low-key, remind me of the modesty I remember seeing in him and his wife and children. I will miss him.

Deborah
 

AGBF

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I thought this might interest some of you. I really liked the rendition of, "Hail to the Chief" done by the Marine Band right before the plane left California for Washington with President Ford's casket on board. Since then I have been reading about the protocols for playing ruffles and flourishes. (There are four before, "Hail to the Chief".)

Hail to the Chief and All That

Deb
 

diamondfan

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He is known in history as the President who pardoned Nixon and who assumed office but never was elected to the post. I think he was a low key and honorable guy. Many people felt pardoning Nixon cost him the election to Jimmy Carter, but I think he was trying to heal our country. He took over during a chaotic time and was trying to bring closure to things. As we saw with the Bush/Gore election drama, the country did not fare well with the intrique and divisiveness. Whatever side you were on, whoever you felt won or should have won, it was not beneficial for us as a nation to be fractured that way. I think Ford, in a way it is easy to see now, was really try to heal the breach and put it behind us, and move the country forward.

As for Betty, her candor is what caused the creation of Betty Ford and it paved the wave for our modern look at substance abuse, rehab and living life as an addict. I think even if we can look in judgement at some of the celebs who overindulge and end up in rehab (making the news each and every time)...I think the fact that she sort of destigmatized it, took away the shame in it, really helped all people with addiction issues. Admitting you have a problema nd seeking treatment, is no longer shocking and career ending or life ending for people. Seeing Elizabeth Taylor making her own bed next to you and suffering as you are can really bring home a reality check that substance abuse is the great leveler of people...no matter how rich (or not) or famous (or not) it has the same potentially detrimental effects...and I think it has been, overall, very valuable to have such options open to those in need of help.

He was the oldest living President currently, I recall seeing Regan''s funeral and feeling a sense of loss, seeing his kids speak and feeling a huge part of history being wrapped up...and now with Ford gone, a gentle giant, teased for his clumsiness and down home ways, our country is one shy again...
 

Kaleigh

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Date: 12/30/2006 8:11:53 PM
Author: diamondfan
He is known in history as the President who pardoned Nixon and who assumed office but never was elected to the post. I think he was a low key and honorable guy. Many people felt pardoning Nixon cost him the election to Jimmy Carter, but I think he was trying to heal our country. He took over during a chaotic time and was trying to bring closure to things. As we saw with the Bush/Gore election drama, the country did not fare well with the intrique and divisiveness. Whatever side you were on, whoever you felt won or should have won, it was not beneficial for us as a nation to be fractured that way. I think Ford, in a way it is easy to see now, was really try to heal the breach and put it behind us, and move the country forward.

As for Betty, her candor is what caused the creation of Betty Ford and it paved the wave for our modern look at substance abuse, rehab and living life as an addict. I think even if we can look in judgement at some of the celebs who overindulge and end up in rehab (making the news each and every time)...I think the fact that she sort of destigmatized it, took away the shame in it, really helped all people with addiction issues. Admitting you have a problema nd seeking treatment, is no longer shocking and career ending or life ending for people. Seeing Elizabeth Taylor making her own bed next to you and suffering as you are can really bring home a reality check that substance abuse is the great leveler of people...no matter how rich (or not) or famous (or not) it has the same potentially detrimental effects...and I think it has been, overall, very valuable to have such options open to those in need of help.

He was the oldest living President currently, I recall seeing Regan''s funeral and feeling a sense of loss, seeing his kids speak and feeling a huge part of history being wrapped up...and now with Ford gone, a gentle giant, teased for his clumsiness and down home ways, our country is one shy again...
Great post DF, you summed up how I feel about him as well. He will be missed. And I feel that Betty did a great service to this country by being forthright about her addictions and know her clinic has helped thousands. And then again she came forward with her breast cancer, educating us all. I hold her in the highest esteem. She is a true lady. Their marriage was rock solid and they had a great love for each other. That was really nice to see. He was a true gentleman, and helped us get through a terrible time. I always respected him, you could tell he was a great person. As DF said he was a gentle giant...
 

AGBF

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Date: 12/30/2006 8:11:53 PM
Author: diamondfan
teased for his clumsiness
Until all this recent publicity Mr.Ford has been receiving because of his death, I had forgotten the so-called clumsiness. There used to be many jokes about his falling down all the time. I remember one about his secret service agents having to wrestle his fork to the ground or some such idiocy. Of course he had been a football star in school and, as the papers are now reminding us, one of our most athletic presidents. What was all that falling about? I do not believe he had a medical problem.

Deb
 

diamondfan

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Thanks Kaleigh...I was really sad to hear about his death but know he had a loving family and an amazing life, both public and private. He did a lot to be proud of and honestly, at the end of the day, I think he was a solid man and did his best. Don''t think being leader of the free world is a cake walk...

A, I think the teasing started when he took a fall down the steps of Air Force One...it had been raining and the steps were slippery. Then he became fodder for jokes on SNL, with Chevy Chase falling all the time imitating him. An ironic side note, from all his pratfalls, Chevy ended up addicted to pain pills and needing rehab...Betty Ford if I am not mistaken! Not that I am making fun but the irony is too much to ignore.

He really was NOT clumsy in real life, he did play football as you said, and played a lot of tennis and golf, as recently as a couple years ago...it just sort of of stuck and became what he was known for...like when Bush Sr. threw up in the lap of the Japanese Prime Minister during a state function...he has not lived it down yet!
 

AGBF

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Here is a link to a wonderful article on Betty Ford in, "The New york Times". I do not know for how long it will remain active.

Article on Mrs. Ford

It discusses not only the effect her candor had on Gerald Ford's Presidency, but how it permanently changed the way in which previously taboo subjects were treated in many areas of society.

Deborah
 

hoorray

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I live in President Ford''s now hometown. We have had several days of motorcades, the private ceremony, his lying in repose and finally being flown out on Pres Bushes plane yesterday. People turned out to pay their respects and watch a moment in history in the same style that Ford lived his life. Much more low key and simpler than many before him. It suited him well, and was very touching.

I''m glad to see him given credit for how important he was at that time in history. I think many had forgotten what a tough time it was, and the good he did for the country.
 

strmrdr

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he was a good man and there aren''t a lot of presidents i can say that about.
 
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