It’s fair to say that Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter’s time in the White House wasn’t considered a universal success, but it can’t be said that they didn’t do their utmost to continue to change lives for the better after Jimmy’s time as president was cut short.
Of all past presidents and former first ladies, Jimmy and Rosalynn are arguably the couple that have done the most humanitarian work in their post-White House life. Both remained dedicated to compassion and kindness in virtually all they did, even striving to inspire kindness well into their 90s.
Sadly, Rosalynn’s passing on November 19 brought an end to one of the most endearing and celebrated marriages in the history of American politics. The former First Lady died aged 96, less than two days after joining her husband in hospice care.
Needless to say, tributes have flooded in from around the world ahead of her funeral, which will be attended by all other living first ladies. That includes Melania Trump, who Rosalynn is said to have offered an olive branch to prior to her death.
In their 77 years of marriage, Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter traveled the world together as lovers, politicians, and humanitarians.
99-year-old Jimmy entered home hospice care earlier this year; taken by many to be a sure fire signal that his end was approaching. Rosalynn was then diagnosed with dementia, and on November 17, she joined her husband so that they could spend their final days together… together.
New details emerged last week regarding how Rosalynn spent her last day of life, as well as the decision Jimmy made during her final hours. Suffice it to say, it makes for tear-jerking reading.
According to reports, 96-year-old Rosalynn passed away at her home in Plains, Georgia at 2:10 p.m. on November 19.
As stated, last week Rosalynn joined her husband half a year after being diagnosed with dementia. Yet a mere two days after doing so, Rosalynn’s health continued to deteriorate after she picked up an infection that antibiotics failed to fight.
Jimmy is said to have sat in his wheelchair by her bed, but soon made the heartbreaking decision to send others out of the room so that he could be alone with his love.
“My father told her he loved her and thanked her for all the wonderful things she had done,” said James E. “Chip” Carter III, who was in his parents’ bedroom with other family members. “Then he asked us to leave so he could be alone with her.”
Chip said that 99-year-old Jimmy sat for around half an hour holding his wife’s hand.
“I’m sure he prayed,” Chip explained.
It’s said that late on Saturday evening, Jimmy was moved into his own hospice bed, which was then placed beside his wife’s so that the couple – married some 77 years – could talk to one another.
Tragically, though, by Sunday morning, Rosalynn had lost the power of speech. Later that day, her long and inspiring life came to an end.
Attentions are now turning to Rosalynn’s funeral, with one particular aspect making for interesting reading indeed. It concerns a decision Rosalynn herself reportedly made before her death, one that speaks to her undying grace and desire to do good.
As per SheKnows, citing the Washington Post, Rosalynn was insistent that fellow ex-First Lady Melania Trump should attend her funeral, despite her husband strongly disagreeing with the Donald Trump administration.
The Post say that “all former first ladies, including Melania Trump,” having been invited to Rosalynn’s funeral. Jimmy and Rosalynn’s son Chip confirmed that his late mother had been “involved in that decision” though she knew that there were “public disagreements over many issues” between her husband and Donald Trump.
“My mother was a gracious person, and she would treat everybody with respect, including a former first lady,” Chip said.
Donald Trump, meanwhile, confirmed that he and Melania will attend the wedding. As for the first ladies, Dr. Jill Biden, Michelle Obama, Laura Bush and Hillary Clinton are all also expected to be there.
I don’t know about you, but I think this is a perfect example of Rosalynn Carter’s famed kindness. Rest in peace, Rosalynn, and thank you for all your hard work.