Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter laid to rest in Plains

PLAINS, Ga. — Family, friends, Georgians and people around the world said their goodbyes to former First Lady Rosalynn Carter this week.

Loved ones gathered in her hometown of Plains, Georgia on Wednesday for a funeral service for Carter, who died this month at the age of 96. Watch footage of the service below from PBS News Hour.

The funeral service was scheduled for 11 a.m.

With her husband as a silent witness, “Rosalynn Carter was celebrated by her family and closest friends Wednesday at her funeral in the same tiny town where she and Jimmy Carter were born, forever their home base as they climbed to the White House and traveled the world for humanitarian causes,” The AP’s Bill Barrow writes.

Barrow adds that the former first lady had her “intimate funeral at Maranatha Baptist Church in Plains, where she and her husband spent decades welcoming guests and where a wooden cross Jimmy Carter fashioned in his woodshop is displayed.

“The former president was in attendance in his wheelchair, with her one last time in his life.”

Maranatha Pastor Tony Lowden began the service with a tribute to “the life and legacy of the greatest first lady,” Barrow reports. Rosalynn Carter wasn’t “just the first lady of the White House,” Lowden told the gathering. “She served every nation around the world.” Read more here.

On Tuesday, Carter was memorialized in Atlanta “with classical music and beloved hymns, some of her favorite Biblical passages, and a rare gathering of all living U.S. first ladies and multiple presidents, including her 99-year-old husband Jimmy Carter in the front row,” Barrow writes.

Barrow adds that as the service began at Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church, Chip Carter, Jimmy and Rosalynn’s son, said, “My mother was the glue that held our family together through the ups and downs and thicks and thins of our family’s politics.”

The former president, who is 10 months into home hospice care and hadn’t been seen in public since September, “watched from his wheelchair, reclined a bit with his legs up and covered by a blanket, with his daughter Amy holding his hand,” Barrow reports. “He sat flanked by his other three children as well — Jeff to his left, Chip and Jack to his right.” Read more here.

Monday’s events began in the Carters’ hometown of Plains and ended in Atlanta, in the lead up to Tuesday’s ceremony at Emory University and her funeral back in Plains on Wednesday.

Who else was in attendance on Tuesday? The White House announced last week that President Joe Biden, First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff would attend the service.

On Monday, the Carter Center announced the rest of the guest list.

The guests included former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former First Lady Laura Bush, former First Lady Michelle Obama and former First Lady Melania Trump. Multiple members of Congress and Georgia officials were also in attendance.

Country music legends Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood, who are longtime friends of the Carter family, performed along with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and ASO Chamber Chorus.

Chip and Amy Carter spoke during their mother’s service while one of the Carters’ grandsons and three of their great-grandchildren read Bible passages.

After the service ended, the motorcade left Emory University on North Decatur Road.

The motorcade passed the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum and Carter Center for a final time before getting on Interstate 75/85 to begin the journey back to Plains.

The Associated Press contributed to this story

Nicole Bennett

Nicole Bennett

CMG Digital Content Producer

Comments on this article





mobile apps

Everything you love about wsbradio.com and more! Tap on any of the buttons below to download our app.

amazon alexa

Enable our Skill today to listen live at home on your Alexa Devices!