Bitter disputes between Trump and his predecessors have fractured the traditional presidents' club. He wasn't invited to speak. George W. Bush, who as president was sometimes prone to an occasional cry, appeared to steel himself with deep breaths throughout the service before letting out a sob.
Democratic former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Mr Trump's 2016 election opponent, and her husband Bill Clinton shared the front pew with Mr Obama, Mr Trump and their spouses. It was laced with indirect comparisons to Trump but was not consumed by them, as speakers focused on Bush's public life and character - with plenty of cracks about his goofy side, too. He drew a small item from his pocket and handed it to Michelle Obama, who smiled.
"Looking forward to being with the Bush family", Trump tweeted shortly before the service. "He will be missed!"
The elder Bush was "the last great-soldier statesman", historian Jon Meacham said in his eulogy, "our shield" in unsafe times. The late President Bush called Trump a "blowhard". He also wasn't invited to the funeral for Republican Senator John McCain, who died in August.
The casket with the remains of former US President George H.W. Bush departs the US Capitol during a State Funeral in Washington, DC, December 5, 2018.
Trump's disparagement of the Bush family and its governance is voluminous. "No one will ever have seen anything like that funeral". This is about the billionth example of unprofessional journalism in their attacks on Trump. "George Bush made a mistake".
"I don't think I would have shaken hands with him, I would just-nope couldn't do it", Lemon said. But I disagree with him when he talks of a kinder, gentler America.
According Meacham, Trump told Bush adviser Lee Atwater in 1988 that he'd be available to be Bush's running mate. If he was Obama, he would not have offered his hand to Trump.
George HW Bush was a horrible president, but Trump is the worst by far
The caretaker who answered the phone at the time told Bush his father had been silent most of the day, though he noted George H.W. Bush would likely be able to hear him if he spoke up.
Lemon went on to say the Obamas "showed the ultimate respect for the office" by not violating it with inappropriate comments, ethics violations, and other scandals.
Former President George W. Bush, right, cries after speaking during the State Funeral for his father, former President George H.W. Bush, at the National Cathedral on Wednesday in Washington.
Trump invited former President George W. Bush and his family to stay at Blair House, the official guest residence across Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House, and crossed the street on Tuesday to pay them a visit.
"To us, his was the brightest of 1,000 points of light", George W. Bush said, using the same campaign motto Trump ridiculed several months ago during a speech.
The former head of state will lie in repose at St Martin's Episcopal Church, where the Bushes worshipped for decades, until Thursday's funeral. "First dibs, as we used to say", Bush said.
George W. Bush and wife Laura stood stoically outside the US Capitol as an honor guard carried his father's flag-draped casket to the hearse.More news: Deontay Wilder retains heavyweight crown after Fury thriller ends in draw