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July 6, 2011    

A unique tribute to Nancy Reagan
on her 90th birthday

Trude B. Feldman, an international journalist and correspondent since the John F Kennedy presidency, has also been a contributing editor for since 2001. Miss Feldman interviewed Ronald Reagan at the 1980 Republican national convention in Detroit. The interview was published on Feb. 6, 1981 as he celebrated his 70th birthday in the White House. She also published birthday interviews and features on each of his birthdays through his 93rd. (He died on June 5, 2004 at age 93.)


Nancy and Ronald Reagan.     
Never published, however, is the following letter, dated Feb. 11, 1987, written to Trude B. Feldman and personally signed in the Oval Office by President Reagan. Recently, Miss Feldman found in her files what she describes as the "letter of devotion" while preparing her in-depth recollection in commemoration of Ronald Wilson Reagan’s 100th birthday.

With Nancy Davis Reagan now celebrating her 90th birthday, we publish this surprise "birthday gift" from her husband, America’s 40th President.

Dear Trude:

Your questions were waiting for me this morning (the morning after our phone conversation). They had just been placed on my desk. Here is my try at providing answers:

What has Nancy meant to me — since I met her? As a girlfriend, wife, first lady?

Answer: She moved into my heart and replaced an emptiness I'd been trying to ignore for a long time. She turned away from a very promising career in pictures because she believed being a wife was a full time career and, if that included being a First Lady, she'd be a First Lady.

President Ronald Reagan being interviewed by Trude Feldman on Jan. 28, 1986.
White House Photo courtesy of Trude B. Feldman

How has she helped you cope with today's crisis? Other crises and problems?

Answer: She has made it so natural for us to be as one that we never face anything as the problem of one or the other of us, it is ours to be dealt with as something affecting the two of us.

How is she coping?

Answer: Nancy simply saw our present position as something that happened to us together and she picked up the duties she saw as those of First Lady and began performing them. And, may I say, in great style.

What would you change in your relations with her if you could relive the years?

Answer: Why should I try to change something that's already perfect? For 35 years I've been blessed with a relationship that is as wonderful as an adolescent's dream of what marriage should be.

Is there anything about her that you'd like to change?

Answer: Well, she worries when she thinks something might go wrong or upset me. If she'd only realize that nothing important can go wrong as long as I have her.

For me, what is her greatest asset? As First Lady?

Answer: That she puts up with me and that her heart is big enough to want to help people in any way she can.

Anything I want to add about Nancy? — And how my love manifested itself over the years — right up to now, and how she is supporting me, especially at this time?

Answer: What can I say? Being married to Nancy is like coming in from out of the cold to a warm room and an open fire. I miss her if she just goes down the hall to another room.


President Reagan really did have a scripted life and the Producer, Director and Writer was the God whom he placed all his trust. It was a story book tale: From the Midwestern child going to Hollywood to play his hero, Gen. Custer, to intrigue in leftist union thugs threatening his life, to losing his career in acting as God was opening a door to work through him to save America and the world literally. People forget the good relationship Mr. Reagan had with his ex wife in Jane Wyman and the two spectacular children they raised in Maureen and Michael, who Nancy Reagan accepted as her own too. In that Nancy Reagan was the perfect wife as she always looked after her husband. People can disagree on the centrist policies which moved Mr. Reagan from the hard right, but it all worked out in the end. Nancy Reagan's heart was almost too big as people did take advantage of her when things affected her family like the Brady's using her and later the stem cell groups using her. In all of that though, it was Nancy Reagan who was loyal to friends and family to a fault. She was attacked for replacing White House cracked china she inherited from the Carters, but in all of that, she has been the epitome of what an American First Lady is. Ronald Reagan's storied life was perfect in his battle with dementia as it allowed Mrs. Reagan the time necessary to tell the real story in defining the Reagan legacy which could not have been done otherwise. Few people realize that as noted Gen. Custer was President Reagan's hero and the Reagans literally carried out what Libby Custer accomplished in telling the real story of her husband while others constantly attacked him. These two Ladies, Elizabeth Custer and Nancy Reagan, are thee most selfless of American womanhood. They not only were devoted to their spouses in life, but were even more so stoically standing alone against the world as widows protecting the men they loved. First Lady Nancy Reagan is the example of all that is American. May she be blessed with a 90th birthday as the blessing she has been for these United States of America in carrying on the real Reagan Legacy of that belief, hope and faith in God above and God's American children on His planet below. Amen.

Lame Cherry      3:38 p.m. / Wednesday, August 3, 2011

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