Jimmy Carter is now the oldest-living former president in US history

Posted on: March 21st, 2019 by ABC News No Comments

Scott Cunningham/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Jimmy Carter is now the oldest-living former president in U.S. history at 94 years and 172 days old, surpassing George H.W. Bush.

Bush, the 41st president, died on Nov. 30 at 94 years, 171 days old. America’s founding president, George Washington, was the youngest former president to die — at 57 years and 67 days — in April 1789, nearly three years after he left office.

Before Thursday, Carter had already set the record for being the former president to live the longest after leaving office, at more than 38 years. Gerald Ford, the 38th president, was the previous record-holder. He died at 61, nearly 30 years after he left office.

Carter, the son of a Georgia peanut farmer, was 52 years old when he was elected as the 39th president in 1976 and is best known as a champion of international human rights both during and after his tenure.

Carter’s administration brokered the Camp David Accords between Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat in 1978 and saw the start of the Iran hostage crisis as well as the first efforts toward developing an energy independence policy.

Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002 after he created the Carter Center to promote human rights worldwide.

In 2015, Carter was diagnosed with metastatic melanoma that was detected in his liver and spread to his brain. About six months after the diagnosis, Carter announced he no longer needed cancer treatment due in part to a groundbreaking medication that trains the immune system to fight cancer tumors.

Two years later, he was hospitalized for dehydration while building homes with Habitat for Humanity in Canada. He was back at the work site the next day after he was discharged.

Carter and his wife, former first lady Rosalynn, share four children together.

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