Following the news that Rosalynn Carter passed away at the age of 96, President Jimmy Carter shared an emotional tribute to his late wife of 77 years.
As previously reported, the former First Lady and humanitarian died peacefully with her family by her side on Nov. 19 in her Plains, Georgia home. She was diagnosed with dementia in May and entered hospice care on Friday, Nov. 17.
In a news release from The Carter Center, Jimmy Carter, who is 99 years old, stated that Rosalynn was his equal partner in everything he’s ever accomplished. “She gave me wise guidance and encouragement when I needed it,” he shared. “As long as Rosalynn was in the world, I always knew somebody loved and supported me.”
Along with Jimmy, Rosalynn Carter is survived by her children, Jack, Chip, Jeff, and Amy, as well as 11 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. One of Carters’ grandsons, Jeremy, passed away in 2015.
Chip shared that along with being a loving mother and extraordinary First Lady, Rosalynn was a great humanitarian in her own right. “Her life of service and compassion was an example for all Americans. She will be sorely missed not only by our family but by the many people who have better mental health care and access to resources for caregiving today.”
The Carter Family has also created a special website for those paying tribute to Rosalynn. Details about her funeral service have not been revealed at this time.
Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Used the Secret Acronym ‘ILYTG’ Since the 1940s
In 2014, Jimmy Carter spoke about the incredibly sweet meaning behind the acronym he and Rosalynn used, “ILYTG.” The duo had been using it since the 1940s.
“‘I love you the goodest,’” Jimmy shared. “That’s what my mother and daddy used to say back and forth, and I picked it up with Rosa.”
After a while, Jimmy Carter stated that ILYTG became a saying that his family lives by. “Now all our children do the same thing – ILYTG on the phone or in emails. They generally just put the initials. And sometimes they change the initials and make you guess what they’re talking about.”
Jimmy Carter married Rosalynn in 1946. They are known as the longest-living first couple. Carter spoke in 2021 about how their love for each other only grew over the years. “We have grown closer to each other,” Jimmy explained. “We’ve learned from each other. And we have learned to accommodate each other’s idiosyncrasies. And we’ve learned how to give each other plenty of space. We can each do our own thing and the other one absent.”
Jimmy Carter is currently in hospice care at home.
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