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January 1, Rosalynn Carter, Wife Of President Jimmy Carter, Dies At 96



Former first lady Rosalynn Carter, a devoted advocate for mental health and caregivers in the United States, passed away on Sunday, Nov. 19, at the age of 96. The Carter Center confirmed her death in a statement, stating that she died at her home in Plains, Georgia, surrounded by her family. Rosalynn Carter was married to the 39th President, Jimmy Carter, for 77 years.

“Rosalynn was my equal partner in everything I ever accomplished,” President Carter said in a statement. “She gave me wise guidance and encouragement when I needed it. As long as Rosalynn was in the world, I always knew somebody loved and supported me.”

Their son, Chip Carter, said, “Besides being a loving mother and extraordinary First Lady, my mother was a great humanitarian in her own right. Her life of service and compassion was an example for all Americans.” He added that she would be sorely missed not only by their family but by the many people who have better mental health care and access to resources for caregiving today.

Rosalynn Carter’s death comes two days after NBC News reported that she had entered hospice care at her home. Her family also shared earlier this year that the former first lady had dementia. Jimmy Carter is currently receiving hospice care at their home.

Born in Plains, Georgia, in 1927, Rosalynn Smith grew up in a God-fearing family and was encouraged to pursue an education. In 1984, she published her autobiography “First Lady from Plains,” in which she reflected on the impacts of growing up in the segregated South, an issue that would inspire the couple’s politics and interest well into their years in the White House.

Rosalynn and Jimmy Carter were childhood friends and eventually married in 1946. They had four children together: Jack, Chip, Jeff, and Amy. In 1970, Jimmy Carter won the Georgia governorship as a Democrat, and Rosalynn Carter became First Lady of Georgia. In 1977, Jimmy Carter became the 39th President of the United States.

As First Lady, Rosalynn Carter made mental health her focus and served as the honorary chair of the President’s Commission on Mental Health. After her husband’s presidency, the couple founded The Carter Center in 1982, a private, not-for-profit organization aiming to advance human rights and stop human suffering.

Rosalynn Carter is survived by their four children, 11 grandchildren, and 14 great-grandchildren.

Why It Matters

Rosalynn Carter’s passing is a reminder of the importance of family values and dedication to service. As a conservative, I respect her commitment to mental health and caregiving, which transcends party lines. Though I may not have agreed with all her husband’s policies, it’s undeniable that she played an essential role in his life and success. Rosalynn’s life serves as an example of how a God-fearing upbringing can lead to a life of compassion and service to others. Let’s remember her legacy and strive to uphold the values she embodied, regardless of our political affiliations.

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