Bush sees 9/11 museum for first time in touching surprise visit – clearly not a photo-op

Thirteen years after he grabbed a bullhorn amid the wreckage of the World Trade Center and declared “the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon,” former President George W. Bush paid a quiet visit to the museum that keeps the memory of the attacks alive.

Stopping by unannounced Sunday evening at the National September 11 Memorial and Museum in New York, Bush pondered exhibits from the day that determined the course of his presidency – and continues to shape American history.

“He was clearly moved by the museum and its contents,’’ a law enforcement source told the New York Post.

The former president was particularly moved by “The Final Column,” an exhibit made up of a beam taken from the rubble of the World Trade Center decorated with photographs of first responders who died at the scene.

Bush did not attend the museum’s official opening in May, leaving that duty to President Obama, and it was clear to the Post’s source that Sunday’s visit was not intended as a photo-op.

Bystanders for the most part were respectful of the former president’s privacy, though he was greeted by Port Authority officers.

“You could clearly see that this was something he had wanted to do for a long time,’’ the source told the Post.

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