Rosalynn Carter, former First Lady of the United States and wife of President Jimmy Carter (1977–1981), passed away at the age of 96 in her Georgia home, according to the nonprofit organization founded by the couple.
Renowned for her modest public image and advocacy for mental health, caregiving, and women’s rights, Rosalynn Carter died peacefully on Sunday, November 19, at 2:10 pm at her home in Plains, Georgia, surrounded by her family, according to a statement from the Carter Center.
Receiving palliative care at home since Friday alongside her husband, she had been diagnosed with dementia in May. President Jimmy Carter expressed his deep affection, stating, “Rosalynn was my equal partner in everything I have accomplished. She provided me with wise guidance and encouragement when I needed it. As long as Rosalynn was in the world, I always knew someone cared about me and supported me.”
Throughout Jimmy Carter’s extensive political career, Rosalynn played a central role in his campaigns. As the First Lady, she stood out as a determined advocate actively involved in politics. She attended cabinet meetings and key briefings, represented the President at ceremonial events, and served as his personal envoy to Latin American countries.
Born in the small town of Plains on August 18, 1927, Rosalynn Carter, the eldest of four siblings, faced challenges early in life after her father’s death when she was 13. Working alongside her mother, who became a seamstress to support the family, Rosalynn’s resilience shaped her character.
Meeting Jimmy Carter in 1945 while attending college, they married in 1946, holding the record for the longest-married presidential couple in US history. Rosalynn Carter’s legacy extends beyond her role as First Lady, marking a significant impact on mental health awareness and humanitarian efforts.