Cartoonist Marshall Ramsey's Barbara Bush tribute goes viral - WLBT.com - Jackson, MS

Cartoonist Marshall Ramsey's Barbara Bush tribute goes viral

Source: Marshall Ramsey/Clarion Ledger Source: Marshall Ramsey/Clarion Ledger
Source: NBC Source: NBC
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: Marshall Ramsey/Clarion Ledger Source: Marshall Ramsey/Clarion Ledger
JACKSON, MS (WLBT) -

A local tribute to Barbara Bush is going viral. The Clarion-Ledger editorial cartoonist Marshall Ramsey never expected the Bush family to see it. But they have.

When Marshall Ramsey puts pen to paper for his cartoons and ultimately scans them in to digital form, he knows the feedback may well be mixed with positive and negative comments. This one, he says, has taken on a more beautiful life.

He's drawn over 6,000 cartoons for The Clarion-Ledger and now the nation's taking notice.

"My phone's going off like a slot machine---ding, ding, ding, ding," said Ramsey Thursday.

Within an hour of posting the cartoon, Jenna Bush Hager and other Today Show anchors started sharing it.

"Jenna posted this cartoon that took my breath away when I saw it on your feed, Jenna,” said Savannah Guthrie on The Today Show Thursday.

Hager joined the show by phone and discussed her reaction to the image.

"These types of tributes that we're getting every moment but particularly that one, I think we can all have that connection, the thought, of being reunited with someone we love," said Hager. "And it gives us such comfort."

Ramsey knew there were several characteristics he could capture with the Bush family matriarch's obituary cartoon. But his thoughts turned to her three-year-old daughter she lost to cancer.

"I thought here's this person who's had everything in the world who now is finally getting to probably heal one of the deepest hurts that she ever had, " noted Ramsey.

Approval from his editor and a small revision later and he had the final product.

"This is amazing," he said as he pointed to the cartoon. "That's what makes the cartoon."

He made a small but powerful addition.

"I wrote the word Mama."

Ramsey added it digitally and says he'll go back and add it to the original before sending to the family.

While he's pleased he could offer some comfort to the family, the impact has expanded.

"I started hearing for those parents who lost their children,"he said. "I'm sitting here reading some of these things out loud and literally it got dusty in the room. And I'm not a crier. Just the hope it was giving people."

Ramsey received an email from the Office of George Bush asking if they could buy some copies of the cartoon. He told them no. Instead, he will give them copies for free and send the original artwork.

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