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Bush: "America Lost A Really Fine Man Yesterday"

PARIS (AP) -- President Bush mourned NBC correspondent Tim Russert at a news conference Saturday with France's president, calling the veteran newsman who died of a heart attack "a hard-working, thorough and decent man."

Bush said that he, Laura Bush and the American people have Russert's widow, Maureen, and son Luke in their thoughts and prayers, saying "I know they're hurting right now," and saying the 58-year-old Russert loved his job, his family and his country.

"America lost a really fine man yesterday," said Bush, who appeared with President Nicolas Sarkozy for a question-and-answer session with American and French reporters in Paris amid their talks on a host of country-to-country and global issues.

"We're going to miss him," Bush said of Russert, saying he had been privileged to be interviewed by the NBC correspondent and Washington bureau chief for the network.

Russert died of a heart attack Friday while at work at his network's Washington studios Friday.


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