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The BG News
BG24 Newscast
September 21, 2023

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Bush’s speech honors police, teachers

CHARLES CITY, Va. – A reflective President Bush yesterday honored acts of everyday decency and supreme sacrifice, and called on Americans to give back to their communities.

In his first speech dedicated to Thanksgiving, Bush said the holiday is a time to hail those who serve causes larger than themselves. He cited police, firefighters, teachers and religious leaders as examples.

“Our nation’s greatest strength is the decency and compassion of our people,” Bush told hundreds gathered in an open-air tent at a plantation that stakes a claim to the first Thanksgiving. “As we count our many blessings, I encourage all Americans to show their thanks by giving back.”

Presidents tend to honor Thanksgiving with routine proclamations, radio addresses that always sound the same, and pardons for a couple of lucky turkeys. Bush elevated it a bit yesterday.

First he stopped by a Richmond, Va., food bank, a former tobacco warehouse that has been converted into a highly organized distribution center that sends millions of pounds of groceries to needy families each year. The visit to the Central Virginia Foodbank underscored a quiet problem – 35 million people in this country went hungry in 2006.

Bush walked by stacks of peanut butter, green beans and soup, then loaded a few crates of oranges, potatoes and macaroni and cheese onto a rolling cart. “C’mon man, let’s go,” he cheerfully told Mike Hennigan, a local pastor, as the two worked together.

Later, he delivered remarks on the nation’s giving spirit at Berkeley Plantation, in a tent overlooking the James River.

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