HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The lines were always going to be long. Yet from daylight until dark, the mourners came.
It was a bit cold and the wait stretched into three hours. Nobody seemed to mind. President George H.W. Bush meant so much to so many.
Of all the mourners, Falah Behbehani perhaps has the most extraordinary story.
"During the war, I was serving my one year in the army and I was captured first day," recalled the Kuwaiti citizen.
He was a prisoner of war during the first Gulf War, when Iraq invaded his country. Bush's decision to send in troops literally gave him his freedom.
"He changed my life," Behbehani said. "He changed the life of many Kuwaitis."
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Other mourners included the perfectly dressed Pablo Calderon, who proudly carried the note President Bush wrote to him. Calderon was the president's tailor for more than 30 years. Bush often got his suits at Norton Ditto, where Calderon worked.
Sometimes, he would visit the president in his office for a fitting.
"He was so nice, so kind to me. I thought he was a different person because he was the president, when I came to see his office, it was him and me only, nobody else," Calderon said.
Then there is teacher Jan Robertson, who wore her crazy socks in honor of the president.
She teaches history at George Bush High School in Fort Bend County. This is a living history lesson she will tell her students.
"He talked about creating a kinder, gentler nation, and we're not that anymore," said Robertson. "I'm here to say thank you for putting it out there, Mr. President. And unfortunately it may take your death to bring us together."
The last bus leaves Second Baptist Church at 5:30 a.m. Thursday for the public to pay their respects.
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Mourners wait for hours to see Pres. George H.W. Bush