(WNY News Now) – Rosalynn Carter, former First Lady of the United States and a key advisor to President Jimmy Carter, passed away at the age of 96 on Sunday. The Carter Center announced that she died peacefully at her rural Georgia home in Plains after a prolonged battle with dementia and declining health.
Georgia – Rosalynn Carter, born in 1927, played a vital role as the closest adviser to President Jimmy Carter during his one term in office and continued their legacy as global humanitarians for four decades. The Carter Center revealed that she passed away surrounded by family at 2:10 p.m.
Throughout her life, Rosalynn Carter received numerous accolades for her dedicated service and advocacy. Among these honors were the “Into the Light” Award from the National Mental Health Association, the Award of Merit for Support of the Equal Rights Amendment from the National Organization for Women, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian recognition. In 2001, she was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame.
Apart from her notable achievements, Rosalynn Carter was also an accomplished author, having penned five books. Notable works include her autobiography, “First Lady from Plains,” and “Everything To Gain: Making the Most of the Rest of Your Life,” co-authored with President Carter, inspired by their life after leaving the White House. Her commitment to mental health and caregiving was further evident in books such as “Helping Yourself Help Others” and “Helping Someone with Mental Illness,” the latter winning the 1999 American Society of Journalists and Authors Outstanding Book Award.
When asked how she would like to be remembered, Rosalynn Carter expressed a desire for people to think that she “took advantage of the opportunities [she] had and did the best [she] could.”
Widely recognized as a leading advocate for mental health and caregiving, Rosalynn Carter was actively devoted to building a more caring society. Her impact extended beyond the political sphere, influencing positive change in the lives of countless individuals. Her commitment to service and compassion was evident in her efforts to address the mental health crisis and provide support for caregivers.
Rosalynn and Jimmy Carter’s family life included four children and 12 grandchildren, with one grandchild predeceasing her. The couple’s partnership, both in public service and private life, exemplified a shared commitment to making a positive difference in the world.
The passing of Rosalynn Carter marks the end of an era, leaving behind a legacy of compassion, advocacy, and tireless dedication to the betterment of society. As the nation mourns the loss of a former First Lady and a remarkable humanitarian, her impact on mental health awareness and caregiving will undoubtedly endure.