Former US President Jimmy Carter in a closed news conference today revealed that he has several cancer spots on his brain. Carter had liver surgery recently and said that doctors discovered the cancer had spread to other parts of his body. Today he revealed that the cancer has spread to his brain, sadly.
This afternoon he will begin radiation treatments for the multiple melanoma spots on his brain, Carter told the audience at the Carter Center. Carter also said he would cut back on his activities with the Carter Center. Carter appeared at the conference with family and friends including his wife, former First Lady Rosalyn Carter.
Carter said at first he thought the cancer was confined to his liver but on the same day as doctors operated on his liver to remove the cancer he underwent an MRI that revealed the cancer was also in his brain. Carter said when doctors removed the cancer from his liver he thought it was completely removed so he was “relieved.” However, when the MRI revealed cancer also in his brain Carter said, I thought I had a few weeks left, but I was surprisingly at ease.”
Carter is 90 years old and served as POTUS before beaten in a second term bid by Ronald Reagan. Carter’s tenure in office saw several foreign policy crises including the taking of American hostage in Iran at the US embassy. It wasn’t until Reagan took over as POTUS that the hostages were released by Iran’s radical Ayatollah Khomeni who ousted the Shah of Iran, Reza Pahlavi.
Since leaving the White House, Carter has been involved in numerous humanitarian efforts including building homes for the poor and monitoring elections in various nations around the planet. He has authored books and also appeared for public speaking at several events.
As President, Carter was accused of being to soft when it came to dealing with Iran and trying to secure the release of US hostages. Many Americans thought Carter should be in the pulpit at the time, not in the White House. True Carter has always been very involved in his Baptist Church and he still teaches Sunday School which he still plans to do this coming Sunday. Many Americans thought the radical Ayatollahs in Iran simply did not take Carter seriously and they considered him to weak to wage any military action against Iran to secure release of the hostages. Carter made a bid for a second term and was defeated by Ronald Reagan significantly as Americans saw Reagan better equipped to deal with the aggressive Iran.
Whether you agree with his politics or not I think everyone will admit that Carter is a good man. Perhaps he’s one of those men who are just to good to a fault. Carter is also remembered for being a very kind president and people who met him in person were struck by his kindness. There’s nothing wrong with being kind but sometimes it becomes a fault as it did in the case with Iran’s aggressive and radical Ayatollahs.
Carter said today at the end of the conference “I’ve had a wonderful life,” and indeed he has. Carter has lived out his values without compromising them in public life and private life. The prognosis for brain cancer is usually not good, sadly. Radiation treatments will take their toll on the 90 year old as they do on others fighting cancer. Carter was very composed at the conference this morning and it appears that he’s come to terms with his cancer and fate.