Jimmy Carter’s wife Rosalynn enters hospice care months after former president

The former first lady enters hospice care shortly after turning 96

Eric Garcia
Friday 17 November 2023 20:57 GMT
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The former first lady Rosalynn Carter speaks to the press at conference at The Carter Center on Nov. 5, 2019, in Atlanta
The former first lady Rosalynn Carter speaks to the press at conference at The Carter Center on Nov. 5, 2019, in Atlanta (Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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Former first lady Rosalynn Carter, the wife of former president Jimmy Carter, entered hospice care months after the 39th president of the United States did so himself.

“She and President Carter are spending time with each other and their family,” the former first couple’s grandson Jason Carter said in a statement on Friday. The Carter family continues to ask for privacy and remains grateful for the outpouring of love and support.”

In February, Mr Carter, who served as president from 1977 to 1981, announced he would enter hospice care rather than receive additional medical interventions. In May, the Carter Center announced that Ms Carter had dementia.

“We recognize, as she did more than half a century ago, that stigma is often a barrier that keeps individuals and their families from seeking and getting much-needed support,” a statement from May said. “We hope sharing our family's news will increase important conversations at kitchen tables and in doctor’s offices around the country.”

Since the former first couple have left the White House, they have focused largely on humanitarian work. While Mr Carter has dedicated himself to building homes for Habitat for Humanity and stopping sicknesses such as those caused by Guinea worm, his spouse has focused heavily on mental health.

The Carters have known each other almost their entire lives, with Mr Carter meeting his future wife only days after she was born. The two continue to live in the same home the couple built in 1961, according to The Washington Post. In 2002, Mr Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

In August, Ms Carter celebrated her 96th birthday while last month, the former president celebrated his 99th birthday. The two did not attend President Joe Biden’s inauguration when he was sworn in given their advanced age and the Covid-19 pandemic.

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