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Carter cancels book appearances due to illness

Former President Jimmy Carter had to cancel two book-signing appearances Tuesday after he fell ill aboard a flight to Cleveland and was taken to a hospital, the Associated Press reported.

Carter, who is in the midst of a tour for his latest book, "White House Diary," didn't make it to Joseph-Beth Booksellers in suburban Cleveland where about 500 people were on hand. Another appearance, scheduled for Tuesday night at the Regulator Bookshop in Durham, N.C., was also canceled, according to his publisher.

Carter's grandson, Georgia state Sen. Jason Carter, said his 85-year-old grandfather was doing fine.

"He's definitely resting comfortably and expected to continue his book tour this week," Jason Carter said. "I haven't talked to him, but nobody in the family is concerned."

Carter said earlier on his Facebook page that his grandfather had left the hospital, but he later told The Associated Press he had the wrong information. A spokeswoman at MetroHealth hospital in Cleveland confirmed he was still there Tuesday afternoon.

The Carter Center, the Atlanta-based nonprofit known for its international work on human rights and public health, said Carter was expected to resume his book tour this week.

Carter was a passenger on a Delta Air Lines flight from Atlanta to Cleveland when he became ill. After the plane landed, he was taken off by rescue crews, said Jackie Mayo, a spokeswoman at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.

He was wheeled into an emergency room at MetroHealth on a stretcher and later was up and walking around, said Mary Atkins, who had taken her daughter to the hospital for medical treatment and saw Carter from a nearby room.

"He walked by the room and he was saying he was ready to go," she said. "They had Secret Service everywhere."

President Barack Obama called Carter from Air Force One as he traveled from New Mexico to Wisconsin, White House spokesman Bill Burton said. Carter was feeling great, Burton said.

Carter expected to continue the book tour later this week and was next scheduled to appear at two events in Washington, D.C., including one at the Smithsonian Institution, said Kathy Daneman, publicity manager at publisher Farrar, Straus & Giroux.

By Steven E. Levingston  | September 28, 2010; 4:26 PM ET
 
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