Former president George H.W. Bush leaves hospital

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HOUSTON -- Former President George H.W. Bush was released from a Houston hospital and went home yesterday after spending nearly two months being treated for a bronchitis-related cough and other health issues, a family spokesman said.

Bush, 88, the nation's oldest living former president, was admitted to Methodist Hospital on Nov. 23. His stay included a week in intensive care last month.

"I am deeply grateful for the wonderful doctors and nurses at Methodist who took such good care of me," Bush said in a statement released by spokesman Jim McGrath.

Bush had been in the hospital about a month before his office disclosed in late December that he was in intensive care because physicians were having difficulty controlling a fever that developed after the cough improved. He was moved back to a regular hospital room Dec. 29 and he has been undergoing physical therapy to rebuild his strength.

Bush and his wife, Barbara, live in Houston in the winter and spend summers in Kennebunkport, Maine. On Jan. 6, they celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary, the longest-married presidential couple.

His form of Parkinson's disease forces him to use a motorized scooter or wheelchair to get around. -- AP

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