Garth Brooks + Trisha Yearwood Sing at Rosalynn Carter’s Funeral [Watch]
Dressed in respectful black, Brooks and Yearwood stood onstage before the late Mrs. Carter's coffin, which was adorned with a colorful array of flowers. Yearwood sang the lead melody for the performance, while Brooks strummed an acoustic guitar and accompanied his wife with gentle backing vocals.
Brooks and Yearwood were longtime friends of former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife; they bonded over their shared passion and support for Habitat for Humanity. The country couple stepped in as the official hosts for the 2023 Carter Work Project, which focused on creating affordable homes in Charlotte, N.C. That build marked the first time the Carters hadn't personally attended a Work Project since 1984.
The memorial service, which took place at Atlanta's Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church was closed to the public, though it was live-streamed for those watching from home. A number of political and cultural luminaries were in attendance at the service, including every living First Lady: Dr. Jill Biden, Melania Trump, Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama and Laura Bush, People reports.
Jimmy Carter, who is 99 years old and has been under hospice care since February, attended his wife's memorial service. According to CNN, his grandson Jason Carter indicated ahead of time that the former President did not intend to speak at the service, since he is "very physically diminished," but said that he planned to stay for the entire event.
Carter watched the ceremony from the front row, along with his children. The former President's daughter, Amy Lynn Carter, addressed the assembled mourners and read a passage from a love letter that her father once sent her mother, explaining that Carter wrote it "75 years ago while he was serving in the Navy."
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Brooks and Yearwood weren't the only musical acts who performed during Mrs. Carter's memorial service. Pianist David Osborne performed "Wind Beneath My Wings," and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chamber Chorus delivered a rendition of "America the Beautiful."
Mrs. Carter died on Nov. 19, just one day after it was announced that she was joining her husband in hospice care. She was 96 years old.
"Rosalynn was my equal partner in everything I ever accomplished," Carter said in a statement after his wife's death. "She gave me wise guidance and encouragement when I needed it. As long as Rosalynn was in the world, I always knew somebody loved and supported me."
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Gallery Credit: Billy Dukes