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Jenna Bush Hager recounts heartbreaking story about ailing grandfather

The TODAY correspondent and her twin sister, Barbara Bush share stories from the past in their upcoming book "Sisters First."
/ Source: TODAY

In their upcoming book, “Sisters First,” TODAY correspondent Jenna Bush Hager and her twin sister Barbara Bush wax nostalgic about their childhood antics, including ones that took place inside the White House under two administrations.

They also provide a unique perspective on growing up as the children and grandchildren of two presidents.

In a book excerpt released in the latest issue of “People” magazine, Jenna describes getting a heartbreaking call in 2012 about her ailing “Gampy,” former President George H.W. Bush.

“My mom called and told me that he wasn’t doing well and that (her husband) Henry and I had to come to Houston — now — to say goodbye,” she writes.

The TODAY correspondent was five months pregnant at the time with her first child, Mila.

“The first thing Gampy did as we walked to the bedside was touch my stomach. Then he said, ‘There’s death and there’s life and I can’t wait to meet this baby.’ I started to cry,” Jenna recalls.

“My grandmother asked: ‘Why are you crying? He can’t wait to meet the baby. He’s going to meet the baby.’ She kept stating over and over all the things he had to look forward to. She gave him no choice but to live. And so he did.”

In addition to Mila, who is now 4, Jenna also has a second daughter, 2-year-old Poppy.

Barbara notes how her sister ended up following her to New York City, where the twins currently make their home.

“We now live four blocks apart. My nieces pop over any time to see Auntie Barbara. We are still intertwined in each other’s lives,” she says.

“For my entire time on this earth, I will share my birthday, and my life meaning, with one other person: my sister.”

The book, "Sisters First," will be out on Oct. 24 but is available now for preorder on Amazon.

For more book recommendations for fall, check out our list of must-reads for October now!

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