Former SF mayor remembers Bush's trip to Bay Area after Loma Prieta earthquake

Art Agnos was the Mayor of San Francisco from 1988 to 1992. During that time, the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake devastated parts of the Bay Area. 

Agnos was sad to learn of the passing of George H.W. Bush but said it’s important for the Bay Area to honor the late president and remember how he helped the region bounce back after that tragic day. 

“Shortly after the shaking started and stopped, he came to inspect the damage not only in San Francisco but in Oakland and throughout the whole Bay Area,” said Agnos. 

The Democratic Mayor rode with the Republican President in Marine Force One – taking a helicopter tour of the collapsed section of the Bay Bridge and the city’s marina district which was one of the areas with the most devastation. 

“This was important to me because our city was a very blue city so to speak politically,” said Agnos. “None of that came through with his attitude or his administration. He wanted what was best for the recovery of our city and our people and that showed.”

This was the first and only time Agnos met Bush Sr. – a meeting that he says changed the city we know today. 

The President offered disaster support from FEMA. Federal funding allowed plans to tear down the elevated Embarcadero Freeway to move forward. “Our city was able to recover quickly because of the cooperation under President Bush,” said Agnos.