Photos: State funeral for former President George H.W. Bush held in Washington, D.C.

Former President George W. Bush follows a military honor guard as they carry the casket out of a state funeral for U.S. President George H.W. Bush at the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)

George H.W. Bush was celebrated with high praise and loving humor Wednesday as the nation bade farewell to the man who was America’s 41st president and the last to fight for the U.S. in wartime. Three former presidents looked on at Washington National Cathedral as a fourth — George W. Bush — eulogized his dad.

“To us,” the son said of the father, “his was the brightest of a thousand points of light.”

George W. Bush broke down briefly at the end of his eulogy while invoking the daughter his parents lost when she was 3 and his mother, Barbara, who died in April. He took comfort in knowing “Dad is hugging Robin and holding Mom’s hand again.”

For all the somber tributes to the late president’s public service and strength of character, laughter filled the cathedral time after time. The late president’s eulogists — George W. included — noted Bush’s tendency to tangle his words and show his goofy side.

Former President George W. Bush speaks during the funeral service for former President George H.W. Bush at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images)

He was “the last great-soldier statesman,” historian Jon Meacham said in his eulogy, “our shield” in dangerous times. But he also said that Bush, campaigning in a crowd in a department store, once shook hands with a mannequin. Rather than flushing in embarrassment, he simply cracked, “Never know. Gotta ask.”

After the service, the hearse and a long procession of cars headed for Joint Base Andrews and the flight to Texas — but first down to the National Mall to pass by the World War II Memorial. (AP)

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Members of the Joint Chiefs salute as a U.S. Air Force 747, that is being called ‘Special Mission 41’, takes off carrying the casket of former President George H.W. Bush, on Dec. 5, 2018 in Joint Base Andrews, Md. (Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Former President George W. Bush waves to the crowd along with his wife, Laura Bush, after the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush was carried by a joint services military honor guard to an Air Force jet during a departure ceremony at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2018. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
A U.S. military honor guard carries the flag-draped casket of former U.S. President George H.W. Bush to “Special Air Mission 41,” one of the Air Force One planes flown by President Bush when he was in office, to depart Washington after his state funeral bound for further services and burial in Texas from Joint Base Andrews, Md., Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Jim Urquhart/Reuters)
People line the streets to pay their respects as the hearse with the casket of former President George H.W. Bush passes by on the way to Andrews Air Force Base after a State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Alex Brandon/Pool via Reuters)
A joint services military honor guard carry the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush to a hearse after a State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush outside the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Patrick Semansky/AP)
The flag-draped casket of former President George H. W. Bush is carried by a joint services military honor guard out of the Capitol, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Win McNamee/Pool via AP)
Members of the Bush family including former President George W. Bush, former first lady Laura Bush, for Florida Governor Jeb Bush and his wife Columba, as well as their brother Neil Bush and his wife Maria depart at the conclusion of the state funeral for former President George H.W. Bush in the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
The Honor Guard carries the casket of former president George Herbert Walker Bush down the center isle following a memorial ceremony at the National Cathedral in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Doug Mills/Pool via Reuters)
Members of the Honor Guard carry the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush out during his State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Andrew Harnik/Pool via Reuters)
Former President George W. Bush places his hand over his heart as the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush is carried by a joint services military honor guard after the State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Alex Brandon, Pool/AP)
Members of the clergy bless the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush at the conclusion of his state funeral in the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
President Donald Trump, first lady Melania Trump, former President Barack Obama, former first lady Michelle Obama, former President Bill Clinton, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former President Jimmy Carter and former first lady Rosalynn Carter participate in the State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush, at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018 in Washington. (Photo: Alex Brandon/Pool via Reuters)
Former President George W. Bush touches the casket of his father, former President George H.W. Bush, at the State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Alex Brandon/Pool via Reuters)
From left, President Donald Trump, first lady Melania Trump, former President Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton listen during a State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington, for former President George H.W. Bush.(Photo: Alex Brandon, Pool/AP)
Former Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyo, speaks during the State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush at the National Cathedral, Dec.5, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Andrew Harnik-Pool/Getty Images)
Former President George W. Bush(R), former first lady Laura Bush and Jeb Bush (L) attend the funeral service for former president George H. W. Bush at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. on Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images)
Former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney speaks during the State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush at the National Cathedral, December 5, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Andrew Harnik-Pool/Getty Images)
Lauren Bush and Ashley Walker Bush during the State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)
PHOTOS: State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush held in Washington, D.C.
Presidential biographer Jon Meacham speaks during the State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Evan Vucci/AP)
President George W. Bush reaches across in front of President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump to greet former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama, sitting in the front row with former President Bill Clinton, former first lady Hillary Clinton and former first lady Rosalynn Carter as he arrives at the state funeral for his father former President George H.W. Bush at the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
President Donald Trump, first lady Melania Trump and former presidents, vice presidents, first ladies and spouses attend the state funeral for former President George H.W. Bush at the National Cathedral, Dec., 5, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
The flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush is carried by a military honor guard during a State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Andrew Harnik, Pool/AP)
Former President George W. Bush arrives at the state funeral for his father and former President George H.W. Bush at the Washington National Cathedral on Dec. 5, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images)
A joint service honor guard carries the casket of former President George H.W. Bush into the Washington National Cathedral for a state funeral on Dec. 5, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Former President George W. Bush (R) and his brother, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, arrive for the funeral service for their father, former President George H. W. Bush, at the National Cathedral in Washington, Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Alex Edelman/AFP/Getty Images)
Joint services military honor guards place the casket of former President George H.W. Bush into a hearse in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Win McNamee/Pool via Bloomberg/Getty Images)
The remains of former President George H. W. Bush arrive at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., for a funeral service on Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Alex Edelman/AFP/Getty Images)
The hearse carrying the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush heads to a State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Alex Brandon/Pool via Reuters)
President Donald Trump reaches over to shake hands with former President Barack Obama as he takes his seat in the first row along with former first lady Michelle Obama, former President Bill Clinton and former first lady Hillary Clinton, former President Jimmy Carter and first lady Rosalynn Carter prior to the state funeral for former U.S. President George H.W. Bush at the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
Canadian military salute on the sidewalk outside the Canadian Embassy, as the hearse carrying the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush drive by on Pennsylvania Ave. from the Capitol to a State Funeral at the Washington National Cathedral on December 5, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo: Alex Brandon – Pool/Getty Images)
President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrive for the State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush at the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Carolyn Kaster/AP)
The hearse carrying the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush passes by the White House from the Capitol, heading to a State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Jacquelyn Martin/AP).
People line the street to see the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush motorcade to a State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Alex Brandon/Pool via Reuters)
The flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush is carried by a joint services military honor guard from the U.S. Capitol, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Alex Brandon/Pool via Reuters)
Former President George W. Bush and former first lady Laura Bush put their hands over their hearts as a joint services military honor guard carries the flag-draped casket of former President George H. W. Bush from the U.S. Capitol to transport it to Washington National Cathedral, Dec. 5, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Alex Brandon – Pool/Getty Images)
Former President George W. Bush (R) and his wife Laura watch as a U.S. military honor guard team carries the flag draped casket of former  President George H. W. Bush from the U.S. Capitol Dec. 5, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Former President George W. Bush and Laura Bush watch as the flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush is carried by a joint services military honor guard to a State Funeral at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Alex Brandon/Pool via Reuters)
A U.S. military honor guard team carries the flag draped casket of former  President George H.W. Bush from the U.S. Capitol, Dec. 5, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Photo:Win McNamee/Pool via Reuters The flag-draped casket of former President George H.W. Bush is carried by a joint services military honor guard from the U.S. Capitol, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Alex Brandon/Pool via Reuters)
Visitors gather before a State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Andrew Harnik/Pool via Reuters)
Former President Jimmy Carter, center, and former U.S. First Lady Rosalynn Carter arrive to a state funeral service for former President George H.W. Bush at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Former Vice President Joe Biden(C) arrives for the funeral service for former President George H W. Bush at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)
Former CIA Director John Brennan shakes hands with President Donald Trump’s Chief of Staff John Kelly before a State Funeral for former President George H.W. Bush at the National Cathedral, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018, in Washington. (Photo: Andrew Harnik/Pool via Reuters)
The hearse carrying the casket of former President George H.W. Bush arrives at the National Cathedral during a state funeral service in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018. (Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
Map shows funeral procession route through Washington for President George H.W. Bush. (AP)

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