"You're not gonna outwork him," the country singer said of the former president's work ethic

By Benjamin VanHoose
November 01, 2019 10:35 AM

Even Garth Brooks admits to not being able to keep up with former president Jimmy Carter‘s unshakable stamina.

During an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Friday, the country star, 57, shared a story working on a Habitat for Humanity housing build alongside 95-year-old Carter.

“We were in Haiti, right, working on the roof — been working on the roof all day long — and they’re metal roofs, it’s 115 degrees. And when you get a roof on, the great thing is now the house has a roof, you can go down and stand underneath it, get two seconds of shade,” Brooks told host Ellen DeGeneres on the show. “In my two seconds, the president walked in. I sit there, and he goes, ‘You need something to do, Garth?’ ”

Laughing about the encounter, Brooks added: “I said ‘No, sir,’ [and] jumped right back out there again.”

Carter and wife Rosalynn, 92, have led annual Habitat builds together for 36 years, constructing and fixing more than 4,000 houses.

Garth Brooks and Jimmy Carter
| Credit: Mark Humphrey/AP/Shutterstock

Now the oldest living president in U.S. history, Carter told PEOPLE earlier this month that he still feels motivated to dedicate his time to helping others, even when his age can make it more challenging.

“I think both mine and Rosa’s minds are almost as good as they used to be, we just have limited capability on stamina and strength,” he said. “But we still try to stay busy and do a good job at what we do.”

Trisha Yearwood and Garth Brooks

Even after Carter suffered a fall at his home in Georgia earlier this month — which required 14 stitches and produced a black eye — he still showed up for a Habitat build in Tennessee hours later.

“I had a number one priority and that was to come to Nashville to build houses,” he told the crowd of volunteers the night after his fall.

Garth Brooks and Ellen DeGeneres
| Credit: Michael Rozman/Warner Bros.

A witness to Carter in action, Brooks attests to the 39th president’s unwavering dedication, calling him a “very hard worker.”

“He has no limit on his work ethic, and there’s nothing you can do to stop him from working either,” the CMA entertainer of the year nominee told DeGeneres, later adding, “You’re not gonna outwork him — him or Miss Rosalynn, either one. They just keep going.”