Nechama Rivlin, wife of Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, was niftar on Tuesday morning at the age of 73, on the eve of her 74th birthday.
In a statement, the President’s Residence said the First Lady passed away of lung failure at Beilinson Hospital in Petach Tikvah, three months after she received a transplant.
She’d been suffering from pulmonary fibrosis for years, but still regularly appeared in public alongside her husband, President Reuven Rivlin, accompanied by a mobile oxygen device.
“Three months after a lung transplant, Nechama Rivlin died this morning,” Beilinson Hospital said in a statement. “To our regret, the medical efforts to stabilize her over time during the complicated rehabilitation period after the transplant did not succeed.”
The Israeli presidency is a mostly ceremonial role. Nechama Rivlin was a popular first lady who focused on the arts, the environment and children with special needs.
Born in an Israeli farming community, she married the future president in 5731/1971 and was a trusted adviser throughout his political career.
She is survived by her husband, three children and seven grandchildren.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu offered his condolences to the Rivlin family.
“Along with all the citizens of Israel, my wife Sara and I feel deep sorrow at the death of the president’s wife, Nechama Rivlin,” Netanyahu said in a brief statement.
“We all prayed for her recovery during the recent period during which she fought bravely and intensely for her life. We extend our heartfelt condolences to the president and to all his family,” he said.
Baruch Dayan Ha’Emes.