President Biden said Monday night that former President Jimmy Carter has asked him to deliver the eulogy at his funeral. Carter, the 39th president and the longest-living president in U.S. history, has been in hospice care at his home in Georgia since deciding to forgo further medical treatment on Feb. 18.
"He asked me to do his eulogy — excuse me, I shouldn't say that," Mr. Biden said after a fundraiser in California on Monday night.
Mr. Biden said he had "spent time" with Carter and said cancer had "finally caught up with him." Mr. Biden, whose son Beau died from brain cancer in 2015, spoke about cancer at Monday's fundraiser and referred to Carter's earlier bout with the disease, saying doctors had "found a way to keep him going for a lot longer than they anticipated because they found a breakthrough."
Carter had a small cancerous mass removed from his liver in 2015, and a year later, he announced he needed no further treatment since an experimental drug had eliminated any sign of cancer.
The Carter Center said in February that "after a series of short hospital stays, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter decided to spend his remaining time at home with his family and receive hospice care instead of additional medical intervention."
The center did not say what medical treatments he had recently undergone. In 2019, he underwent surgery to relieve pressure on his brain caused by a subdural hematoma. He also has been hospitalized in recent years after suffering a series of falls.
Carter's grandson, Jason Carter, said last year that the former president was looking ahead to his 98th birthday "with faith in God's plan for him."
In May 2021, Mr. Biden and first lady Jill Biden visited Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, in Plains, Georgia. At the time, Mr. Biden said they "talked about the old days." Mr. Biden served in the U.S. Senate during Carter's presidency from 1977-1981.