Former President Carter ill with advanced cancer

Jimmy Carter

A number of years ago, I was in the women’s department of Macy’s in downtown Washington, DC, searching for a winter coat. I looked up from the rack where I was browsing and first saw a flank of dark-suited men forming something of a semicircle around a distinguished-looking, elderly gentleman who was sitting quietly on a chair near the dressing room. He seemed very familiar, but I couldn’t quite place him. I then looked in another direction, saw an elegant woman winding her way through the clothes racks, and thought she was familiar as well. It suddenly became very quiet, and I had the sense that I was the only other person in the store—though I don’t think that was actually true. Then, it slowly came to me that I was just feet away from former President Jimmy Carter, former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, and a Secret Service detail. Something took me over and gave me courage and wings as I watched myself nearly fly to him and blurt out, “President Carter, you are my hero.” Until that moment, I hadn’t known I felt that way, but I surely did. And, I do still.

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