Her name was well-chosen, for from all accounts, Lady Byrd Johnson was the epitome of a lady. Her life of 94 years ended yesterday.
In his press conference this morning, President Bush, emphasized her splendid attitude and demeanor when he said, “Lady Byrd Johnson brought grace to our White House.”
Around the country, others are praising this beautiful woman:
“Mrs. Johnson became First Lady on a fateful day in November 1963 and was a steady, gentle presence for a mourning Nation in the days that followed.” — President Bush.
“Like all Americans, but especially those of us who call Texas home, we loved Lady Bird …. She made the world beautiful in so many ways, and was beautiful to all of us who knew and loved her.” — Former President George H.W. Bush.
“During her husband’s campaign for the presidency in 1964, she visited cities in the South considered too racially volatile for his presence. She was President Johnson’s full partner in the War on Poverty, including convincing him to implement the Head Start program and serving as its honorary chair.” — Former President Jimmy Carter.
“Lady Bird Johnson was a wonderful first lady and one of the kindest and most caring and compassionate people I’ve ever met in politics. She was a great friend to the Kennedy family, in both good times and bad, and we cherished every moment we spent with her. May God bless her and her entire family.” — Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass.
“When our nation called upon Lyndon Johnson to take the oath of office in the face of tragedy he did so with his courageous wife beside him. As First Lady she represented our nation with honor and dignity.” — Former first lady Nancy Reagan.
“She was a dedicated and devoted first lady. Her beautification programs benefited the entire nation. She translated her love for the land and the environment into a lifetime of achievement.” — Former first lady Betty Ford.
“First Lady Johnson epitomized all that was good and right in America. She encouraged the President and the Congress to beautify our highways and by-ways; she was one of the first ecologists that we knew, and she made us better as a people and a nation.” — Former Texas Lt. Gov. Ben Barnes.
“She was a woman of courtesy and courage alike. While her husband, Lyndon, could be brash, she was benevolent. While he could be tough and hard-charging, she epitomized style and grace. Together, they were a formidable pair.” — U.S. Sen. Robert C. Byrd, D-W.V.
“Her support for civil rights helped to ensure that the 1960s were a time of great progress toward the ideal of equality on which our country was founded. Her impact in the fight against poverty and in support of early childhood education in America, through her support for initiatives such as Head Start, endures today.” — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.
“Lady Bird Johnson embodied all that is beautiful and good about the great state of Texas. She inspired generations of Americans with her graceful strength, unwavering commitment to family and keen sense of social justice.” — Texas Gov. Rick Perry.
“She was one of our most beloved first ladies in our history. She made me proud as a Texan. She showed such class and graciousness. Her lasting legacy will be the beautification she championed.” — U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas.
May her family be comforted.
My devotional blog is here.