Welcome home indeed
Throngs of people lined the streets and American flags were in abundance along the funeral route for Mrs. Betty Ford, the former first lady who died July 8 and came home to rest beside her husband, Gerald, at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum. A statement from their children read, in part: “Mother's love, candor, devotion, and laughter enriched our lives and the lives of the millions she touched throughout this great nation. To be in her presence was to know the warmth of a truly great lady.” Mrs. Ford’s straightforward — and very public — admission of personal health problems and the way she handled them endeared her to a nation hungry for leadership during turbulent times. But to her friends back home, she was simply “Betty,” and that connection with Grand Rapids never faltered.