CLAIM

Former president George H.W. Bush passed away on 11 February 2017.

FALSE

RATING

FALSE

ORIGIN

Reports that former president George H.W. Bush had passed away were circulated online in mid-February 2017:

Former USA President George H.W. Bush died on Saturday after suffering a heart attack, America’s Public broadcaster said. He was 93.

In a sign of mourning, PCTV channel 26 aired a black banner on the corner of its broadcast. Several people have sent their condolence messages including President Trump on his Twitter handle. Others have confessed how important he was.

There was no truth to this story. As of this writing, George H.W. Bush is still alive.

This report was published on a variety of fake news web sites, some of which used domains similar to those of legitimate news publication. For instance, this story was circulated on Facebook via both TV-CNN.com (not affiliated with the CNN cable news channel) and Fox-Channel.com (not affiliated with the Fox News Channel):

The death of a former president would be a major news story everyone, yet reports of President Bush’s alleged demise were absent from all major news publications. President Bush’s Twitter account was also void of information about his alleged death.

Furthermore, while this fake news story claimed that President Trump had mourned Bush’s death on Twitter, we found that President Trump had issued no such tweet.

Bush was hospitalized in January 2017, but the former president was well enough on 5 February 2017 to participate in the coin toss at the Super Bowl.