A Local Pastor Recalls Early ’90’s Visits from President George H.W. Bush

As thousands across the country mourn the loss of President George H.W. Bush, one church here in Alabama is feeling the loss a little more. President Bush visited montgomery in the early 1990’s when he fished with Bass Masters founder Ray Scott.

Scott, a member of Pintala Baptist Church, invited Bush to church when Bush was in town visiting. Pastor of Pintala Baptist Church Gary Burton says he remembers those visits well.

“He came every year, and even when he was out of office. He came that first year when he was out of office, I think in 1992,” Burton recalls.

Burton says Bush made an impact, and the two became friends.

“He was very windsome, a very warm person. He was powerully kind, and just to know that he had taken the time visit this country-cross roads church was thrilling for us.”

Burton says Bush’s influence helped the church raise money for a new sanctuary. It was built in 1992. Burton remembers giving Bush a tour of the newly built sanctuary.

“The fact that he would kinda lend his influence to the cause in those days, was quite remarkable for us and it helped us raise the money we needed.”

While Bush was known for his humor and leadership, Burton says he will remember Bush for his kindness.

“Just for him to walk through this church and to be affirming to those who were helping prepare and serve the meals, those working with the golf carts and out in the fishing area, he just was careful enough to stop and speak and affirm what they were doing,” Burton says.

Burton says while he hadnt talked to Bush in a while, the two used to exchange letters around the holidays to keep in touch.

Funerals will be held on Wednesday and Thursday, before Bush’s body will laid to rest on Thursday.

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