Nancy Reagan

March 6th, 2016

After my mother died in June 1986, Nancy Reagan, First Lady, an advocate on fighting drug abuse, wrote a beautiful letter to me. Mrs. Reagan recognized the great contributions my mother had made during her lifetime in the prevention and treatment of alcohol abuse and drug abuse. My family responded and thanked her for her kind letter.

Three months after President Reagan left office, April 1989, as they were leaving a dinner in their honor, the guests all lined up on either side of a created pathway to the exit to honor the Reagans and say good evening.

As President Reagan was approaching where I was, I was about to put out my hand to shake his when a huge light shone right in my eyes momentarily blinding me. It was a video camera. I chose not to put out my hand as I didn’t know where it would end up. And that could have been bad.

The light was blocked by President Reagan and I could see Nancy Reagan. I introduced myself and thanked her again for her kind letter. She recognized the name and remembered my mother. We smiled warmly and then she moved on with her husband.

I met her not too long ago at the President Reagan Library at an event for the Medal of Honor Association. Getting a little frail, but still elegantly dressed and mentally agile, leaning on a tall, strong assistant, she was engaging and kind to each person who said hello to her. Again, she remembered my mother and now me.

I so appreciate her advocacy of stem cell research. It has saved several of my friends’ lives. ¬†And her Just Say No campaign. I imagine that may have saved millions of lives.

I have always admired Nancy and Ronald Reagan’s devotion to each other. I don’t exactly mourn her death. I admire her elegance and grace and willingness to stand up for what she believed in and I rather feel happy for her – I imagine her rejoined with her true love.


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