For a generation, from Presidents Eisenhower and Reagan, not a single President would serve two terms. The departure of each serving in that time were under less than favorable circumstances including Kennedy by assassination, Johnson under fire for Vietnam, Nixon under investigation for Watergate.
Into that difficult time, President Ford, like Carter after him, was noted for bringing a different approach to the Presidency, in an effort to restore the faith of the American people to the office.
President Ford had his work cut out for him in those two short years, but he did his duty as he saw fit, even to the point of sacrificing his re-election. While his pardon of President Nixon assured his defeat by Jimmy Carter in 1976, it spared the nation from the prospect of a President being convicted and jailed, as if in some third-world military coup d'etat.
While it would still be some years before the Presidency regained the respect lost in Vietnam and Watergate, Ford took the first steps forward, both by preserving the office through his pardon and his personal conduct in the office.
In two short years, he did much. For that, he has earned the respect of his nation, and for that, he will truly be missed.
-Trisagion Prayer for the Departed
"O God of spirits and of all flesh, Who has trampled down Death and overthrown the Devil, and given life unto Your world, give, we beseech You, eternal rest to the soul of Your departed servant, in a place of brightness, in a place of verdure, in a place of repose, from whence all pain, sorrow, and sighing, have fled away.
Pardon, we beseech You, every transgression which may have been committed, whether by word or deed or thought. For there is no man who lives and does not commit a sin. You only are without sin, Your righteousness is everlasting, and Your word is the Truth.
For You are the Resurrection, and the Life, and the repose of Your departed servant, O Christ our God, and unto You we ascribe glory, together with eternal the Father, and Your Most Holy, and Good, and Life-giving Spirit, now and forever, and for ages to come. Amen.
May our gracious and merciful Lord, who rose from the dead, Christ, our True God, through the intercessions of His Holy Mother and of all the Saints, establish the soul of His departed servant in the mansions of the righteous; give rest in the bosom of Abraham, and number his soul among the just, and have mercy upon us and save us".
Eternal be Your memory.