Carter released after 3-day hospital stay

Jimmy Carter in Americus, GA in November 2009 for hospital ground breaking .
Jimmy Carter in Americus, GA in November 2009 for hospital ground breaking .
(Source: CNN)
(Source: CNN)
Cleveland, OH (Source: CNN)
Cleveland, OH (Source: CNN)

CLEVELAND, OH (RNN) - Former President Jimmy Carter was released from an Ohio hospital Thursday afternoon, two days after falling ill aboard an airplane bound for Cleveland, OH.

"President Carter was discharged from MetroHealth Medical Center today at 1:15 p.m., after recovering from a gastric viral infection," said Eileen Korey, vice president of communications at MetroHealth, in a joint statement with the Carter Center. "He will resume his schedule with a meeting this week in Washington, D.C. This long-planned event is related to Carter Center work."

Carter had been en route to a book signing when he became ill Tuesday. Paramedics were waiting when his plane landed, and he was admitted to the hospital later that morning.

Several stops on Carter's book tour were canceled because of his illness, said Kathy Daneman, a publicist with Carter's publisher, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, including a Thursday stop in Columbia, SC.

The 39th president of the United States, who turns 86 Friday, had been scheduled to sign copies of his latest publication, "White House Diary." He has been a prolific writer since his departure from the presidential scene. "White House Diary" is his 24th book.

In addition to his writing, Carter remains involved with the Carter Center, which plays an active role in the public policy arena. The center's mission statement says that it is "guided by a fundamental commitment to human rights and the alleviation of human suffering; it seeks to prevent and resolve conflicts, enhance freedom and democracy, and improve health."

The center is housed at Emory University, where Carter has been teaching for the past 29 years.

Carter last made headlines on Aug. 27, when he landed in Boston, MA, after completing a private humanitarian initiative in North Korea. Carter flew to the nation's capital city, Pyongyang, to bring home American Ailjalon Mahli Gomes, who at the time was facing an eight-year hard labor sentence for crossing into North Korea's border without permission.

Carter came from humble beginnings, born in the farming community of Plains, GA in 1924.

In 1946, he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from the U.S. Naval Academy. Carter rose to the rank of lieutenant before being placed in the Navy's nuclear submarine program. As part of his assignment, Carter studied nuclear physics at the graduate level.

In 1953, the former president retired from the Navy upon his father's passing. He returned to Plains to open a farm supply company and held numerous local public offices before he was sworn in as governor of Georgia on Jan. 12, 1971. This led to a chairmanship at the DNC in 1974 and his presidency in 1976.

Carter's presidency is remembered for its foreign policy accomplishments, which included establishing diplomatic ties with the People's Republic of China, the Camp David Accords and the Salt II Treaty. On the home front, Carter was a reformer of education and the environment with legislation like the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act.

The Carter Presidential Center was dedicated in his memory in October 1986.

On Dec. 10, 2002, Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize by the Norwegian Nobel Committee "for his decades of untiring effort to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts, to advance democracy and human rights, and to promote economic and social development."

Carter's family includes First Lady Eleanor Rosalynn Smith Carter, children John William, James Earl III, Donnel Jeffrey, Amy Lynn, 11 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

On Tuesday, Carter's grandson, newly elected Georgia State Sen. Jason Carter indicated on his Facebook page that his grandfather was "doing fine -- resting comfortably, and will continue his book tour this week."

EDITOR'S NOTE: Information for this article was gathered from the Jimmy Carter Library & Museum website at and the Carter Center website at

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