Nancy Reagan has died at the age of 94, according to TMZ. Mrs. Ronald Reagan, as she wished to be known even when her husband died, was the 40th president’s closest confidant and a played a major role in his career and presidency.
When Ronald Reagan died, an ABC News report said that “their love story has always been a part of the presidential story.”
The New York Times wrote, “Mrs. Reagan was a fierce guardian of her husband’s image, sometimes at the expense of her own, and during Mr. Reagan’s improbable climb from a Hollywood acting career to the governorship of California and ultimately the White House, she was a trusted adviser.”
Reagan biographer Craig Shirley wrote in his book Last Act: The Final Years and Enduring Legacy of Ronald Reagan, “They were best friends and soul mates, and his letters over the years left no doubt as to the depth of their mutual love.”
“Mrs. Reagan was a balm to him and he hated being on the road without her,” Shirley once said in an interview. “His diaries recount on several occasions how much he missed her when she was traveling. She also was better as judging who was there to help Reagan versus helping themselves than he was.They were the consummate team, madly in love with each other and content to be alone with no one else around.”
The world may have never had the man who won the Cold War if it was not for the driving force of Nancy in his life. Ronald Reagan aide Michael Deaver once said that, “Without Nancy, there would have been no Governor Reagan, no President Reagan.”
Ronald and Nancy Reagan met in 1949 when Ronald was the head of the Screen Actors Guild and they married three years later. Their bond was deep and a driving force behind Ronald Reagan’s relentless and successful political career.
When Ronald Reagan was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 1994, Nancy become his primary caretaker until his death in 2004. Throughout that time she remained a guardian of his legacy.
Tributes have poured in from across the country:
Today our nation mourns the loss of Nancy Reagan, a true example of integrity and grace. My prayers are with the entire Reagan family.
— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) March 6, 2016
The official statement on Nancy Reagan's passing https://t.co/EAV3wkZmPP
— Mark R. Levin (@marklevinshow) March 6, 2016
— John McCain (@SenJohnMcCain) March 6, 2016
Thank you Nancy Reagan for your service & amazing contributions during an era of bold reforms and political courage. pic.twitter.com/31ssVvfa1k
— Rep David Schweikert (@RepDavid) March 6, 2016
Tonette & I send our prayers to the Reagan family. Nancy Reagan had such a positive impact on so many Americans: https://t.co/UHYkUOIk0T
— Governor Walker (@GovWalker) March 6, 2016
— Craig Shirley (@CraigSBPA) March 6, 2016
Nancy Reagan will be remembered for her deep passion for this nation and love for her husband, Ronald. The Reagan family is in our prayers.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) March 6, 2016
With the passing of Nancy Reagan, God and Ronnie have finally welcomed a choice soul home. https://t.co/NjiOBT9xoQ
— Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) March 6, 2016
Nancy Reagan, the wife of a truly great President, was an amazing woman. She will be missed!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 6, 2016
RIP Nancy Reagan and Pat Conroy. Many fond memories with the Gipper & the Great Santini.
— Jim Webb (@JimWebbUSA) March 6, 2016
Nancy Reagan inspired us with strength & grace & we can all take comfort that she is with her sweet Ronnie again. pic.twitter.com/oWGal9c9wK
— Nikki Haley (@nikkihaley) March 6, 2016
Nancy Reagan embodied what it means to represent America as First Lady and her dignified and warm demeanor inspired America
— Reince Priebus (@Reince) March 6, 2016
My statement on the passing of Nancy Reagan. pic.twitter.com/5ZHXpKGzZB
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) March 6, 2016
Nancy Reagan, who was admired by the nation, will be sorely missed. Condolences to the entire Reagan family.
— Senator John Thune (@SenJohnThune) March 6, 2016
"Open your eyes to life to see it in the vivid colors that God gave us." – Nancy Reagan, rest in peace pic.twitter.com/eafIyVvxmE
— Heritage Foundation (@Heritage) March 6, 2016
Was honored to work closely w/ Nancy Reagan on the Reagan Library. pic.twitter.com/6n4NlbRbH5
— Steve Forbes (@SteveForbesCEO) March 6, 2016
Nancy Reagan passing, while sad for all Americans, serves as a timely reminder of how toxic our politics have become. We must return.
— Jon Huntsman (@JonHuntsman) March 6, 2016
RIP Nancy Reagan. A rock for her husband and a wonderful representative of American grace and style.
— Hugh Hewitt (@hughhewitt) March 6, 2016
Rest in peace, Nancy Reagan. She touched the heart of a nation and made the world a better place. pic.twitter.com/BEscm47daQ
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) March 6, 2016