Jimmy Carter’s grandson said Tuesday that the former president is “doing okay” but also “nearing the end” of his “faith journey.”

“Jason Carter spoke at the 28th Rosalynn Carter Georgia Mental Health Forum, the first of the annual event since the First Lady’s passing last November,” 11 Alive reports.

“(My grandfather) is doing OK,” Carter said, according to CNN.

“He has been in hospice, as you know, for almost a year and a half now, and he really is, I think, coming to the end that, as I’ve said before, there’s a part of this faith journey that is so important to him, and there’s a part of that faith journey that you only can live at the very end and I think he has been there in that space,” he added.

Per CNN:

Jimmy Carter, now 99, became the oldest living president in history after George H.W. Bush died in 2018 at the age of 94. He has survived metastatic brain cancer, liver cancer and a number of health scares, including brain surgery after a fall in 2019. He entered hospice care in February 2023 after a series of hospital stays and made a rare public appearance to attend his wife’s memorial service back in November.

“My grandmother’s passing was a difficult moment for all of us, including my grandfather,” Jason Carter said Tuesday. But, he added, “The outpouring of love and support that we, as a family, received from people in this room and from the rest of the world was so remarkable and meaningful to us. And it really turned that whole process into a celebration.”

Rosalynn Carter made mental health advocacy one of her key areas of focus as Georgia and America’s first lady. In 1977, Carter made it her signature cause, notably through the creation of the President’s Commission on Mental Health. Her efforts resulted in increased research funding, broader treatment access and innovative approaches to mental health care.

Jason Carter said that moments with his grandfather over the past year reminded him of the mental illness aspects related to caregiving, another cause his grandmother championed.

11 Alive reports:

He added an anecdote form his visit, though, illustrating how former President Carter has retained his sharp wit.

“I said, ‘Pa Pa, you know I can’t — people ask me how you’re doing and I say, I don’t know. And he said, ‘Well, I don’t know myself.’ And so he’s still there,'” Jason Carter recounted, laughing.

Back in February, the Carter marked one year since Jimmy Carter had entered hospice care. At that time the family issued a statement saying he continued to be at home visiting his family.

“The Carter Family is grateful for the many expressions of love they have received and the continued respect for their privacy during this time,” the statement said. “The family is pleased that his decision last year to enter hospice care has sparked so many family discussions across the country on an important subject.”

The Rosalynn Carter Georgia Mental Health Forum is ongoing through Tuesday afternoon, and according to the event listing this year “will emphasize inclusivity, equity, and resilience in mental health advocacy.”


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