Borough woman shares memories of George H.W. Bush

Grace Applegate Tissiere [from right] and her husband Richard Tissiere were given a tour of the Rose Garden by President George H. W. Bush during a trip to the White House during his administration. COURTESY OF GRACE APPLEGATE TISSIERE

SPRING LAKE — As the nation prepared for the funeral of George H. W. Bush this week, Grace Applegate Tissiere, a Spring Lake resident who worked in his administration, shared memories of the former president.

She reflected, in particular, on the friendship her late husband Richard enjoyed with Mr. Bush.

Mr. Tissiere was the president of the Heavy & Highway Laborers Union Local 472 in Newark, according to Ms. Applegate Tissiere, where Mr. Tissiere met President Bush for the first time.

While Mr. Tissiere was president of the union, he invited President Bush to speak at the union hall while he was running for re-election, and the then-president accepted.

“When [President Bush] was speaking to the [union] members, he said ‘You’re president invited me to his office, so I’m going to invite him to mine,’” she said.

At the time, Ms. Applegate Tissiere worked for President Bush as the labor liaison for the Assistant Secretary of Labor Jerry Schanell and worked with the Secretary of Labor Elizabeth Dole in Washington D.C.

When Mr. Tissiere went to D.C. to meet with the president “in his office,” he asked if Ms. Applegate Tissiere would be able to attend as well, since they were not married at the time.

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