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Ex-president George Bush, 91, breaks neck bone in fall

Published 16/07/2015

George HW Bush and his wife Barbara pictured in March (AP)
George HW Bush and his wife Barbara pictured in March (AP)

Former US president George HW Bush has broken a bone in his neck after falling at his home in New England.

Mr Bush, 91, was in a stable condition and was doing "fine", spokesman Jim McGrath said. Mr McGrath tweeted that the father of ex-president George W Bush would be in a neck brace.

He is being treated at Portland's Maine Medical Centre, where a children's hospital is named after his wife Barbara.

Mr Bush senior, the oldest living former US president, was admitted to hospital in Houston, Texas, in December for about a week for treatment of shortness of breath. He said he was "grateful to the doctors and nurses for their superb care".

He spent Christmas 2012 in intensive care at the same Houston hospital while being treated for a bronchitis-related cough and other issues. He was discharged in January 2013 after a nearly two-month stay.

He has a form of Parkinson's disease that has forced him in recent years to use a motorised scooter or wheelchair for mobility.

Republican Mr Bush served two terms as Ronald Reagan's vice president before being elected president in 1988. After one term, highlighted by the success of the 1991 Gulf War in Kuwait, he lost to Democrat Bill Clinton amid voters' concerns about the economy.

He was a naval aviator during the Second World War and was shot down over the Pacific. He is also a former US ambassador to China and a CIA director.

Mr Bush has skydived on at least three of his birthdays since leaving the White House. He celebrated his 90th birthday by making a tandem parachute jump near his summer home in Kennebunkport, Maine, but had a low-key 91st birthday with his family.

During the winter he and his wife live in Houston.

Another Bush son, Republican former Florida governor Jeb Bush, is running for president next year.

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