Breaking News: RIP Ladybird

Former First Lady Ladybird Johnson has died. She was 94.

She loved wildflowers and was a pioneer in roadside beautification.

Her real first name, btw, was Claudia, which is one of my favorite names.

Advertisements

15 Comments

Filed under 01_shakespeares_sister

15 responses to “Breaking News: RIP Ladybird

  1. Kate217

    That’s sad, even though she was 98. I hope she rests in peace.

  2. even though she was 98

    “Only” 94, actually. Stellar innings. You can’t complain about that.

    I just read that Lyndon died in 1973, which means that she lived longer without her husband than I’ve been alive. For some reason, that made me really sad. It’s the kind of thing that makes me wish I could believe in an afterlife.

  3. Brynn

    It’s the kind of thing that makes me wish I could believe in an afterlife.

    Me, too.

  4. oddjob

    Lyndon really was pretty much killed by the Vietnam War. I remember watching television in ’71 or ’72 or some such, watching a football game where the University of Texas was playing (they were a powerhouse at the time), & Johnson was at the stadium watching the game. I remember how weird it looked to see him with his hair grown long (almost shoulder length), like he was a “hippy” (a basically new word at the time).

    He & Truman died within a month of each other in the winter when I was in 8th grade.

    I’ve always regarded Ladybird with fondness. My impression was that she was always a truly classy lady and I hope she rests in peace.

  5. Susan

    She was a truly lovely person and very dedicated to the beautification of this country. Lady Bird was very effective in her dedication to removing the hideous billboards which ued to plaster the interstate highways. You’ll be missed, Mrs. Johnson.

  6. Kate217

    “Only” 94, actually.

    Man, I really do have the attention span of a gnat if that figure didn’t even survive the comments page load. :blush:

  7. Man, I really do have the attention span of a gnat if that figure didn’t even survive the comments page load.

    LOL! My excuse is always that I have a mind like a steel sieve. A steel sieve, I tells ya!

  8. i too hope she has found peace. she brought calm and class at a time singularly lacking in both.

    i agree with viet nam killing lbj oddjob. a man that vital and vibrant to be brought so low, so quickly. . . no matter whether or not one agreed with him on viet nam, at least he took his decisions seriously and felt them in his heart and soul. they weighed hard upon him.

  9. Kate217

    LOL! My excuse is always that I have a mind like a steel sieve. A steel sieve, I tells ya!

    I frequently use “a steel trap, rusted open.”

  10. sab

    I grew up in the southeast in the fifties and sixties, and when you drove through it you could not see the scenery for the billboards. Ads for chewing tobacco and cigarettes and restaurants and alligator farms. It was amazing- just a wall of ads along every highway. Ladybird got rid of that. When you drive in the South and you can see trees and flowers and lakes and mountains and the ocean and the woods, just remember that she made it possible. I know she did a lot of other stuff, but that’s what I remember her for. Beautiful scenery.

  11. Winchell

    I’ve always regarded Ladybird with fondness. My impression was that she was always a truly classy lady and I hope she rests in peace.

    Well said, Oddjob. I feel the same way.

    BTW, Lyndon Johnson is one of my favorite presidents. I always felt he was vastly underrated and that his legacy was marred by Vietnam. He is the foremost president regarding civil rights with his signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, The Voting Rights Act (of 1965), and his appointment of Thurgood Marshall as the first African American Justice of the Supreme Court.
    I also loved his Great Society program, which showed just brilliant visionary leadership and a genuine love and care for his country.
    We’re talking FDR
    I always thought that if I ever had a son, I’d consider Lyndon for a middle name.

  12. Winchell

    We’re talking FDR

    …didn’t finish my thought there…

    We’re talking near-FDR level presidency here folks

  13. PhoenixRising

    My kid has been looking out the minivan window at the scenery of East Texas–and thanking Lady Bird for it–since 2004. We taught her to notice the flowers first, then to express her gratitude.

    Recently we figured out that the kid thinks ‘Lady Bird’ is what our family calls God. (It could be worse.) I’ll show her this picture of the real Lady Bird tomorrow morning.

  14. Lyndon Johnson always makes my list of ten best and ten worst presidents. He was brilliant domestically and brutal militarily — such different levels of competence that it’s almost impossible to believe it was the same man running both operations. What connects both, I suppose, is that he was simply too big a man to be simply mediocre.

    But while he earned his fate, at least he took it; he knew Vietnam had killed his career and he accepted it. And yeah, it probably killed him early. Contrawise, our current president will live, untroubled by his conscience, to a ripe old age. And that makes me wish I believed in an afterlife.

    As for Lady Bird, like Melissa I only remember her in the absence of her husband, but I never heard anything negative about her; I’m glad she had a good long run.

  15. I, too, remember Lady Bird fondly for her efforts to beautify America.

    BTW, did anyone notice that the fine character actor Charles Lane died as well, at 102? Man, when I was growing up he seemed to be in everything.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s