Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, the longtime wife of former United States President Jimmy Carter, has died at the age of 96.
The Carter Center confirmed her death on Sunday afternoon, saying that she passed away surrounded by her family at her home in Plains, Georgia.
A champion of mental health, caregiving and women’s rights, Carter was married to former President Jimmy Carter for 77 years.
“Rosalynn was my equal partner in everything I ever accomplished,” Jimmy Carter said in the Carter Center release. “She gave me wise guidance and encouragement when I needed it. As long as Rosalynn was in the world, I always knew somebody loved and supported me.”
She leaves behind three children, 11 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
Tributes began to pour in from across the political world early Sunday afternoon.
“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,” President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden said in a statement. “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.”
“Rosalynn Carter was a great partner to a consequential President and helped to define the modern role of First Lady,” former United States Attorney General Eric Holder said on X, formerly Twitter. “She was gracious, warm and determined.”
Rep. Barbara Lee posted a tribute on social media, calling Carter “one of the most impactful, dedicated first ladies in history.”
“Rosalynn Carter was a consummate humanitarian and public servant,” Lee said on X, formerly Twitter. “She led with grace and a deep passion for helping vulnerable people, including championing mental health.”
Maria Shriver, former first lady of California, called Rosalynn Carter someone who she “deeply respected.”
“Thank you, Mrs. Carter for everything you did, for the way you used your voice, for the love you exuded,” Shriver said on X, formerly Twitter.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer paid his respects on social media, calling Carter a “passionate humanitarian and champion for people all over the world.”
Former Vice President Al Gore posted on X, formerly Twitter, that he was “blessed” to have been able to work alongside her.
“Rosalynn Carter was a remarkable leader,” Gore said. “Unwavering in her partnership with her husband Jimmy, she build upon the work they did together by championing the causes of mental health, human rights and the needs of children around the world.”
U.S. Senator Cory Booker also took to X, formerly Twitter, to express his condolences.
“All her life, Rosalynn Carter dedicated herself to serving others,” he said. “As First Lady, she served out country with grace and kindness.”
Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) said he was “deeply saddened” by Carter’s passing and commended her service as a “beloved first lady and wonderful humanitarian.”
Melania Trump, a former first lady herself, also paid tribute to Carter on social media, remembering her for her “meaningful legacy not only as first lady, but as a wife and mother.”
“We will always remember her servant’s heart and devotion to her husband, family and country,” Melania Trump said.