President George H. W. Bush and Patrick. (Photo: Office of George Bush)
David Jackson, USA TODAY
Former President George H.W. Bush shaved his head Wednesday to show support for a 2-year-old boy who is battling leukemia and is losing his hair because of treatment.
The leukemia patient is the son of a member of the former president's Secret Service detail, Bush's office announced.
The nation's 41st president, age 89, got the idea to go bald when he noticed that members of his detail had also shaved their heads in solidarity with the boy.
The former president's office identified the boy as "Patrick," withholding his last name at the family's request.
The office also announced that Bush's Protective Division has "launched a website at www.patrickspals.org to assist with Patrick's medical bills, and organized the Inaugural Patrick's Pals Motorcycle Benefit Run on August 10th in Kennebunkport -- a 50-mile motorcycle ride through the Maine countryside followed by a lunch and silent auction to raise funds for Patrick's treatments."
Bush visited the White House earlier this month for a ceremony in which President Obama honored his predecessor's "Points of Light" volunteer program.
George and Barbara Bush, the parents of President George W. Bush, lost 4-year-old daughter Robin to leukemia 60 years ago this October.