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Laura Bush

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“A great strength of our country is the selfless spirit

of those who see a need and create a wonderful way to fill it.”

Laura Lane Welch Bush, 1946–.  First Lady of the United States, 2001–2009.  Typed Letter Signed, Laura Bush, one page, 6¼” x 8½”, on engraved, blind-embossed stationery of The White House, [Washington, D.C.], September 6, 2001.  With original envelope postmarked September 12, 2001.

In this letter—dated five days before the 9/11 attacks and mailed the day afterward—Mrs. Bush congratulates an organization, Friends for Life of America, on its program to collect and distribute hats and toys to pediatric cancer patients.  She writes, in full:   

I am pleased to send a special greeting and a resounding THANK YOU to Friends for Life of America for the difference you make in the lives of pediatric cancer patients.

A great strength of our country is the selfless spirit of those who see a need and create a wonderful way to fill it.  That you collect hats and toys and distribute them to sick children both here and abroad is admirable.  You have discovered the power of a teddy bear or a pack of art supplies to sooth the anxious, reassure the fearful, and comfort the suffering.

Your example is an inspiration to those around you.  May Friends for Life of America continue to grow and to brighten the lives of young patients.

With best wishes . . .

The original mailing envelope for this letter shows that the White House was working the day after the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and the intended attack on the White House or the United States Capitol.  The postmark, which was applied with a red-ink postage meter and thus is not a Postal Service cancellation, is dated September 12, 2001.  In their respective memoirs, Decision Points and Spoken From the Heart, President and Mrs. Bush recounted how they stayed in the White House the night of the attacks once the President returned, via a circuitous route for safety, from an appearance at a school in Florida.

This is a beautiful letter in extra fine condition.  It has never been folded but was mailed flat in the large manila envelope that accompanies it.  The presidential seal is blind embossed at the top.  Mrs. Bush has signed in black felt-tip pen. 


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