GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Crewmembers from the USS Gerald R. Ford aircraft carrier visited Mary Free Bed Hospital Saturday to see patients and staff. 

The Navy Sailors are in Grand Rapids to participate in a ceremony honoring President Gerald R. Ford's 106th birthday on Sunday. 

The Ford family has a longstanding relationship with Mary Free Bed that dates back to 1931. Ford's mother-in-law was the president of the Mary Free Bed Guild and the former first lady Betty Ford was a founding member of the Mary Free Bed Junior Guild. 

The sailors met with veteran patients and received a tour of the hospital.

Sunday morning, they will commemorate the former president with a wreath-laying ceremony at the tomb of the 38th President and former First Lady on the grounds of the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum. 

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