Gerald R. Ford, the 38th president of the United State and the man who assumed the office in the wake of the Watergate scandal has died. He was 93 years old.
Ford was the only man to hold the presidency without ever having won a national election. He was selected by Richard Nixon to be vice president after Spiro Agnew resigned. A few months later, in August 1974, he became president when Nixon was forced out of office when White House tapes revealed Nixon had conspired to cover up the Watergate scandal.
Ford's most notable act in the White House came one month later when he issued a blanket pardon to Nixon, thus freeing the former president from all legal actions with regard to his conduct.
Few have questioned Ford's honesty or decency, but his decision to pardon Richard Nixon one mont after he took office is still controversial. Ford had been Republican leader in the U.S. House of Representatives before becoming the vice president. He had served there from 1948 to 1974.
He is also the last surviving member of the Warren Commission , the group put together by Lyndon Johnson to investigate the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963. The commission, after months of investigation, reached the conclusion that Lee Harvey Oswald had acted alone when he killed the president on Nov. 22, 1963.
Ford's presidency was marked by numerous foreign crisis including the U.S. exit from Vietnam in 1975.
Ford also survived two assassination attempts during his presidency, both occurring in California.
A gifted athlete, Ford played on the national championship football teams at the University of Michigan in 1933 and 1934 and was offered a professional football contract.
He served as an officer for the U.S. Navy in the south Pacific during World War II.