George W. Bush: 'I Have a Duty' to Veterans

"My spirit is always uplifted when I visit with vets."

An emotional George W. Bush was featured in the Sunday Spotlight on ABC This Week with George Stephanopoulos. The former president spoke of his perennial commitment to serve veterans returning home from the grueling days of war and reintegrating them into society.

Bush said:

There's what we call a civilian, military divide. In other words, the returning vets think one thing, the civilian population thinks another and our aim is to get people to understand each other better for the good of the veteran community.

Guest host Martha Raddatz suggested that Bush's involvement with vets must help him "cope with what happened in those wars." Bush answered in the affirmative saying:

I have a duty. I obviously get slightly emotional talking about our vets because -- I'm in there with them. But my spirit is always uplifted when I visit with vets -- I say, there's no self-pity. We've got a society that's incredibly comfortable and too many people saying, "Oh man, woe is me." Not our veteran community; they don't say, "Woe is me." They say, "What can I do to continue to serve." 

Sitting alongside former President Bush was Jacob Wood, who is co-founder and CEO of Team Rubicon. Wood was a Marine Corps squadron leader in Iraq and sniper in Afghanistan. His nonprofit organization uses veterans to respond to disasters around the world, putting their combat skills to work helping communities rebuild. Wood says the work is challenging for vets and allows them a place to be understood.

President Bush continues his public service through The George W. Bush Presidential Center by "Empowering Our Nation's Warriors."