DMH Spotlight - Historic Photographs of Betty Ford by Diana Mara Henry.


Photographs Copyright © 1977 Diana Mara Henry

Please contact us for permission to use!

From the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library & Museum

The family of President and Mrs. Gerald R. Ford issued the following statement,

also at:

"It is with great sadness that we inform you that our beloved mother Betty Ford has passed away at 93 years of age. She died peacefully today at Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage, California.

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.

Mother's passing leaves a deep void, but it also fills us with immeasurable appreciation for the life we and Dad shared with her."
Susan Ford Bales
Steven Meigs Ford
John Gardner Ford
Michael Gerald Ford


Raised in Michigan, Betty Ford (1918-2011) majored in modern dance at Bennington College in Vermont, and in 1948 married Gerald Ford who later became the 38th president (1974-77). Betty is notable for her support of the ERA campaign, her work on many women's rights and women's health issues, particularly breast cancer which she recovered from in the 1970s, and her founding of the Betty Ford Center for Chemical Dependency in 1982.Mrs. Ford was 93 when she died, on July 8, 2011, from natural causes.

"LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Betty Ford said things that first ladies just don't say, even today.

And 1970s America loved her for it."

Three first ladies and Bella Abzug at the Opening of the FNWC, Houston, 1977.

"Dear Diana:
Thank you very much for contacting the Gerald R. Ford Library about your photographs. The images from the National Women's Conference in 1977 on your web page are great, and they highlight an historic event. Thanks for sharing the link with us!
Stacy Davis

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library"

Barbara Jordan applauded by Bella Abzug, Rosalyn Carter and Betty Ford after her keynote address at the First National Women's Conference, Houston, 1977.

Congresswoman Elizabeth Holtzman applauds in background, at left, as Ladybird Johnson, Rosalyn Carter, Betty Ford, first ladies, Linda Robb behind them, and Bella Abzug hold high the torch at the opening of the First National Women's Conference, Houston, 1977. Donna de Varona stands beside them, Suzy Chaffee and Michelle Cearcy below, and in foreground, Peg Kokernot and Sylvia Ortiz.

Photographs Copyright © 1977 Diana Mara Henry

Please contact us for permission to use!

For those considering sending flowers or making a contribution in honor of Mrs. Ford, her family has requested that contributions and donations in lieu of flowers be made to the organizations on the Contributions page of the Betty Ford Memorial website or by the following:

Betty Ford First Ladies Tribute Fund
c/o Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation
303 Pearl Street, NW
Grand Rapids, Michigan 49504-5353

All images Diana Mara Henry. All rights reserved. Terms of Use