Remembering Nancy Reagan

Last Sunday, Nancy Reagan passed away at her home in Los Angeles. She was 94. Reagan was First Lady while her husband, Ronald, served as President of the United States from 1981 through 1989. While in the White House, she was known for returning to past eras of elegance and for taking a proactive role in policy; prior to that, she starred in more than a dozen movies. It was through the film industry that she and Ronald would develop a lasting friendship with John Wayne. Here Nancy Reagan is remembered by John Wayne’s son, Patrick.


In the late 1980’s I was invited to a White House dinner by then President Ronald Reagan and First Lady Nancy. When I asked what was the occasion, Nancy said that it was a state dinner for the Chiracs and that Madame Chirac had personally requested my presence. At the end of the evening, Nancy personally thanked me for attending. Some years later, I asked Nancy to attend our fundraiser at the John Wayne Cancer Institute. She graciously accepted the invitation to be honored, saying if it will help your cause. She didn’t make these appearances often. She didn’t forget her friends. She was a lovely, thoughtful and passionate woman.

– Patrick Wayne

Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images Entertainment / Getty Images

Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images Entertainment / Getty Images

Casey Holland