To most of the world, George H.W. Bush was a former president of the United States. To 17 kids, though, he was first and foremost a grandfather.
"While he was a part of the whole world, he was very grounded and certainly made us all feel very loved and made us feel very special," Ashley Bush said.
Ashley, daughter of Neil Bush, and Marshall, daughter of Marvin Bush, sat down to share memories of their grandfather on Good Morning America Monday.
Marshall, who was a young child when Bush served in the White House, said she remembered going over to swim in their pool and play with their dogs.
"As crazy as it sounds, it was very normal for me," she recalled. "It was just how it was. It was like anyone going to see their grandparents, with a little extra security."
As they got older, the Bushes said their grandfather was a constant presence in their lives, despite his responsibilities as a public figure. Ashley said she especially remembered that he would come to their high school productions and even make cameos in the shows.
Marshall, who was with her grandfather during his final hours, said it was "really peaceful" and that she was thankful to be able to "try and make the very last part of his life as comfortable and loving as he made ours."
She added, "He was always there to listen, always there to love. And to me that's the most important thing he taught me. Family always comes first, and you do what you can to help the world."