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Joe And Jill Biden Pay Heartfelt Tribute To 'Champion Of Equal Rights' Rosalynn Carter

The Bidens remembered former First Lady Rosalynn Carter for her many humanitarian efforts and her marriage to President Jimmy Carter after her death on Sunday at age 96.

Joe and Jill Biden; Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter
Paul Morigi/Getty Images; Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden offered heartfelt condolences in a statement on Sunday night, paying tribute to the life of former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, who passed away earlier that day at the age of 96.

Rosalynn Carter, according to The Carter Center, peacefully departed, surrounded by her family after a life dedicated to advocating for mental health care, caregivers, and women’s rights. Her impactful role in reshaping the role of the first lady through her political activism during her husband Jimmy Carter’s presidential tenure remains a significant part of her legacy.

In their statement, the Bidens praised Rosalynn Carter's individuality, acknowledging her as an inspiration to both the nation and the world, lauding her tireless efforts in championing equal rights and opportunities for women, girls, children, the elderly, and individuals with disabilities.

They said:

"First Lady Rosalynn Carter walked her own path, inspiring a nation and the world along the way."
"Throughout her incredible life as First Lady of Georgia and the First Lady of the United States, Rosalynn did so much to address many of society’s greatest needs."
"She was a champion for equal rights and opportunities for women and girls; an advocate for mental health and wellness for every person; and a supporter of the often unseen and uncompensated caregivers of our children, aging loved ones, and people with disabilities."
"Above all, the deep love shared between Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter is the definition of partnership, and their humble leadership is the definition of patriotism. She lived her life by her faith."

The Bidens acknowledged that their friendship with the Carters spanned four decades, adding that "we always felt the hope, warmth, and optimism of Rosalynn Carter."

They concluded:

"On behalf of a grateful nation, we send our love to President Carter, the entire Carter family, and the countless people across our nation and the world whose lives are better, fuller, and brighter because of the life and legacy of Rosalynn Carter."
"May God bless our dear friend. May God bless a great American."

Both the President and First Lady also shared similar messages on their respective social media channels.

Many joined the Bidens in paying tribute to the late First Lady.

Earlier this month, Rosalynn Carter, following a diagnosis of dementia in the spring, transitioned to hospice care alongside her husband. Married for an impressive 77 years, Jimmy Carter celebrated his late wife's incredible contributions, recognizing her as his “equal partner in everything I ever accomplished.”

Jimmy Carter entered hospice care in February after choosing to stop treatment for melanoma, a type of cancer. He and his late wife still lived on their family property in Plains, Georgia, the town where they were both raised and where they married in 1945.

The two were the longest-married presidential couple; Jimmy Carter is the longest-lived president and Rosalynn Carter was the second-longest-lived first lady after Bess Truman, who died in 1982 at 97.