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The beautiful story behind the 75-year marriage of Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter

Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter

Ann Ronan Picture Library | Photo12 | AFP

Cerith Gardiner - published on 07/10/21

Take a little inspiration from the former first couple, who celebrate 75 years of marriage.

The Carters have just celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary, and are the longest married presidential couple ever. The secret behind their longevity comes from the bond they’ve shared since the day they met — nearly a century ago.

Carter’s mother, Bessie, was a nurse who helped to deliver her neighbor’s daughter, Rosalynn. Jimmy at the time was just 3 years old. The next day, the little boy popped by and met baby “Rosie” for the first time.

The three-year age age gap played a big part in their early days. Jimmy simply didn’t pay much attention to his younger neighbor. It was only after WWII when he returned to his hometown of Plains, Georgia, that he spotted Rosie.

Then 17, she was standing in front of the United Methodist church, a very different girl than the one he’d left behind when he joined the Naval Academy. After a little shock, Jimmy asked her out straight away. The pair went on a trip to the movies and Jimmy declared to his mother that he would be marrying the little girl she’d helped bring into this world.

The couple went on to have four children, and with his wife by his side Jimmy became the 39th president of the United States.

Although you may not agree with Carter’s politics, there is something to be said for a man who was determined to marry the young woman he met as a newborn, and who thrived by her side as they navigated the world of family and politics together.

While their long marriage is a rarity these days, the couple has supported each other through their various endeavors and proven that a solid marriage is built on commitment, friendship, and simplicity.

In fact, this simplicity has continued throughout their marriage. In their golden years the couple maintain a modest lifestyle, living in the two-bedroom home Jimmy built in 1961 back in Plains, where their story first began in 1927.

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