May 13, 1997 in Nation/World

Clinton Graduates From Crutches To Cane

Compiled From Wire Services

President Clinton returned from the Caribbean on Monday with good feelings about his foreign policy and good news about his bum knee: He graduated from crutches to a cane.

Just what he needs to step into the Oval Office that much faster and confront the pile of work that accumulated while he was away.

The president went public with his new, white cane Monday as he climbed out of his limousine in Bridgetown, Barbados, and boarded Air Force One with a slow, steady gait.

Arriving at Andrews Air Force Base in suburban Maryland 4-1/2 hours later, Clinton also used the cane to help him step off the jumbo jet.

Clinton’s physicians and therapists told him it was time to start using the artfully carved cane, one of two he received from a Mexican monastery last week. That apparently delighted the president, who is anxious to get back to his beloved golf game.

“He’s ready to get some freedom of movement back and would like to ditch the crutches,” White House spokeswoman Mary Ellen Glynn said prior to Monday’s departure. His doctors wanted the crutches to go also, she said, because the president had begun to experience back pain.

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