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Postal Service honors George H.W. Bush with stamp

AUSTIN, Texas -- There will now be a new, familiar face on postage stamps.

The U.S. Postal Service released a commemorative Forever stamp Wednesday featuring former President George H.W. Bush in honor of what would have been the 41st president's 95th birthday.

"It's especially fitting to honor President Bush with his own stamp because he truly understood the power of a handwritten letter," said Robert Duncan, chairman of the Board of Governors of the U.S. Postal Service, at a Wednesday dedication celebration for the new stamp in College Station.

Duncan, asking for audience participation at the celebration held at the Annenberg Presidential Conference Center, asked how many people in attendance had received a handwritten letter from the former president. Dozens of hands shot up.

Bush's grandson Pierce, his former chief of staff Jean Becker and various other friends of the former president also spoke at the celebration, which featured a cappella arrangements by musical groups and the unveiling of a larger-than-life replica of the stamp.

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Bush selected the image for the stamp, according to David Jones, president and CEO of the George and Barbara Bush Foundation. Artist Michael J. Deas painted the portrait for the stamp, based on a 1997 photograph on the cover of Texas Monthly for an article about the dedication of Bush's presidential library.

The former president died in November at the age of 94.

The Postal Service has been putting presidential likenesses on stamps since 1847 when George Washington became the first president to appear on one.

The stamps are available for purchase online and in some post offices.


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