Back when former First Ladies were classy and did not try to guilt the American people into liking them, there was Jackie Kennedy, Eleanor Roosevelt, Barbara Bush, and Nancy Reagan.
Nancy Reagan was the devoted wife to her husband Ronald Reagan. They had met while her husband was president of the Screens Actors Guild. They dated for three years before becoming engaged at their favorite booth at a restaurant the couple frequented.
During Reagan’s California governorship, Nancy was named the Los Angeles Times “Woman of the Year” and a model first lady for her work with veterans, foster homes, and for her work on the California Arts Commission.
When her husband became president, Nancy Reagan stayed by his side as his loyal confidant during his eight years as the president. She helped create the “Just say no to drugs” campaign. She was also known for elegant and graceful fashion sense.
After her husband’s attempted assassination, she stayed by his side as his protector. She became involved with his routine and demanded to know everywhere he was scheduled to be and wielded much influence on his decisions. Though the press tried to paint her as “the power behind the throne,” Nancy always said she was proud to have helped her husband when many of his advisers failed him.
After her husband left office and was later diagnosed with Alzheimer Disease, she remained loyal to him until the end.
After her husband’s death, Nancy remained in the public eye and received many honors including the Presidential Medal of Freedom from George W. Bush.
While the media does its best to try to repaint the Reagans, and no doubt they were imperfect, Nancy was a classy and graceful woman who was of genuine spirit. As a First Lady, she captivated a nation and helped us become better for it.