Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn Carter, are in the “final chapter” of their lives, as shared by one of their grandsons.
The 39th president of the United States chose to enter hospice care at his residence in February, following a series of brief hospital stays, according to Hugo Wentzel, his grandson.
“After a series of short hospital stays, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter today decided to spend his remaining time at home with his family and receive hospice care instead of additional medical intervention,” revealed The Carter Center in a February statement.
“He has the full support of his family and his medical team,” the statement continued. “The Carter family asks for privacy during this time and is grateful for the concern shown by his many admirers.”
His wife Rosalyn was diagnosed at age 95 with dementia, according to a May announcement from the family.
“He’s pretty sick,” Wentzel said during an interview with Entertainment Weekly. He still does use his brain. He listens to audiobooks. He’s a genius. He’s super smart. I love him. ”
“He always wants to be doing something with his mind, so he’s trying to keep himself busy, but he is really sick and getting older,” Wentzel added.
Another grandson, Josh Carter, told People magazine that since Mr. Carter began hospice care, someone is always at the house to keep his grandparents company. Often it is one of their children, the grandson stated.
More recently, the only visitors to their home have been family and caregivers, he added.
“It’s clear we’re in the final chapter,” the grandson said, noting that while there is time to bid farewell to his grandparents, it doesn’t make the impending loss any less challenging.
He finds solace in the fact that his grandparents “lived their lives to the fullest,” the report noted.
“He’s still fully Jimmy Carter,” he added about the former president. “He’s just tired. I mean he’s almost 99 years old, but he fully understands [how many well wishes he’s received] and has felt the love.”
As for his grandmother Rosalynn she is aware of her dementia diagnosis, according to her grandson, but she mostly recognizes her family members.
“My grandmother is still able to form new memories,” he added.
People magazine asked Josh Carter about the likelihood of his grandfather’s passing before his grandmother.
“He’s in hospice care and she’s not, and it’s just math,” he opined. “Odds are I’m gonna lose my grandfather before my grandmother.”
The Carter’s grandson reminisced about annual New Year’s gatherings when the entire family got together and went somewhere amazing.
“And those family trips are one of my most cherished memories,” he said. “My grandparents have always been the entertainers … But now we’re kind of the ones having to entertain. It’s different, it’s just a different era.”