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Clinton Returns Home After Heart Surgery

September 11, 2004|From Associated Press

CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. — Former President Clinton left the hospital and returned home Friday, four days after undergoing heart bypass surgery, his office said.

Clinton arrived early Friday evening at his home in the New York suburb of Chappaqua, according to his spokesman, Jim Kennedy. "The president is in good spirits and has taken short walks in the hospital hallway and in his home today," Kennedy said in a statement.

The 58-year-old Democrat was taken off his respirator and placed in an intensive care unit Monday, the day of his quadruple bypass surgery.

On Wednesday, he was moved back to his hospital room, where he walked with assistance, sat up in his bed and sat in a chair. Clinton had planned to campaign for Sen. John F. Kerry, the Democratic nominee for president, but the former president's recovery from surgery will for now take him off the stump, with less than eight weeks left until the election.

In recent days, Clinton has been inundated with thousands of messages of support and flowers, his foundation said.

"We appreciate more than words can say all the good wishes and messages of concern that we received during this difficult time in our lives," Clinton, his wife, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), and their daughter, Chelsea, said Friday in a statement relayed through the family's spokesman.

"We feel blessed to have such support, and it will continue to sustain us throughout the months of recuperation that remain ahead," they said.

The family also thanked the doctors and nurses at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, where the surgery was performed.

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