A Central Valley native was part of Wednesday’s funeral services for former George H.W. Bush in our nation’s capitol. Caleb Harrington has been part of the U.S. Navy Ceremonial Guard since summer 2017. The standards to join are very selective, but those close to him aren’t surprised he’s a part of it.
Not a beat missed, or step out of place as soon as the guard took hold of Bush’s casket. In that select guard stood Fresno native Harrington, 25. His mother, Lisa Harrington, said her son has what she calls a “deep sense of gratitude” for being a part of this moment.
“He really considers it a way to pay respect, to take people to their final resting place,” she said.
At Central High School-East Campus — where Caleb played football and graduated in 2011 — football coach Jeff Klein remembers him well. He said Caleb was someone who made a point to help others.
One way was by being involved with Central High’s Athletes as Readers and Leaders program. The program got student-athletes with elementary school students to read to them. The goal ultimately is to encourage students to live healthy and stress the importance of picking up a book.
“He always volunteered for [different community events], always put other peoples’ interests before his own,” Klein said.
The giving spirit isn’t exclusive to Caleb, though. Lisa said her three other kids are just like him. For the Harringtons, servitude is standard operating procedure.
“Our sense of serving those around us and kind of getting outside ourselves has always been a part of being a Harrington,” she said.
This isn’t Caleb’s first time having a hand in history. For Sen. John McCain’s services, he laid down a wreath at the Vietnam War Memorial with McCain’s wife, Cindy.