Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter Honors Betty Ford in Grand Rapids
I had the pleasure of attending the news conference and luncheon with Rosalynne Carter, wife of former President, Jimmy Carter, and of course, former First Lady, at the J.W. Mariott today.Mrs. Carter was in town to honor her friend, former First Lady, Betty Ford, on what would have been Betty Ford’s 96th birthday. The Gerald R. Ford Foundation, with sponsorship from Amway, Fifth Third Bank, and other community businesses, brought Mrs. Carter in for the celebration.
Steve Ford, son of Betty and President Ford, hosted and moderated her luncheon speech and talk. Mrs. Carter talked about the closeness that she and Betty Ford shared, with the common bond of being wives of U.S. Presidents, and the causes they each fought for in the U.S.
Betty Ford lead the charge for both drug dependency and cancer awareness. Mrs. Carter was, and still is, deeply involved in mental health, bringing more awareness in the fight for treatment and for insurance coverage. Both Betty and Rosalynn were huge supporters of the Equal Rights Amendment.
Hearing how President Ford locked himself out of the White House in his bathrobe at 2 a.m. while taking the dog out, or how the Carters cat sneaked into a State Reception for Presidents and Prime Ministers of countries around the world, gave us all a real peak behind the doors of the White House. Presidents and their families are real people, after all.