She and harry truman returned to independence missouri and back to her grandfathers house at 219 delaware street she was a loving wife mother and proud grandmother president truman died on december 26 1972 bess truman died in october 1982 of congestive heart failure at the age of 97 and is the longest lived first lady in us history mrs. Letter harry s truman to bess wallace november 11 1918 truman papers family business and personal affairs file november 11 1918. Six years after leaving the white house bess truman became the first known of three women who had served as first lady to learn she had breast cancer and survive undergoing a mastectomy the 1959 surgery being conducted discreetly and not being reported to the general public david this is not the white house its the wallace house . Letter harry s truman to bess wallace july 14 1918 truman papers family business and personal affairs file july 14 1918
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