Gerald R. Ford served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, attaining the rank of Lt Commander

Statement from Veterans Affairs Secretary Jim Nicholson On the Passing of President Gerald Ford

Today, we mourn the passing of Gerald Ford, the thirty-eighth President of the United States of America.

Before the world knew him as President, Vice President or Congressman, Gerald Ford served our Nation proudly in the Navy during World War II. Even after ascending to the highest office in the land, President Ford kept a military man’s perspective and never forgot what it meant to serve his Nation. Aptly, he once said, "The presidency and the vice-presidency were not prizes to be won, but a duty to be done."

President Ford spent a lifetime answering the call to duty, and we are forever grateful for his service to our country. On behalf of the Department of Veterans Affairs and our Nation’s veterans, I offer our condolences to Mrs. Ford and the entire Ford family. They will remain in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult period.

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(Posted 12/28/06)