Ronald Reagan

1911 - 2004

President Ronald Reagan and First Lady Nancy Reagan.  Photo Copyright (C) 1984-2004 Art Harman All rights reserved, unauthorized use prohibited.
Ronald Wilson Reagan  1911 - 2004
Margaret Thatcher | "Tear Down This Wall!"
"The house we hope to build is not for my generation but for yours. It is your future that matters. And I hope that when you are my age, you will be able to say as I have been able to say: We lived in freedom. We lived lives that were a statement, not an apology."

June 15, 2004


An interesting story from the October 28, 1985 edition of the Howard Phillips Issues and Strategy Bulletin: “This past summer I received a fascinating piece of correspondence from a long-time supporter of The Conservative Caucus, George Birdsall. Let me share part of it with you:

“ ‘When I graduated from the eighth grade, farm children took their final examinations in their home school. The papers were sent to the County Superintendent and he selected the one with the highest grades to be valedictorian at a large ceremony in the County Seat. The day I graduated (1911) the auditorium was full and about fifty graduates were on stage.

“The program had to wait about half an hour because the superintendent had to go after the valedictorian. When she arrived in her everyday clothes to make her speech, the superintendent introduced her and explained that someone in her family was having a baby and no one had time to take her to her graduation. Toward the end of the program the superintendent made this announcement: “Well, the baby is born, it’s a boy, and his name is Ronald Wilson Reagan, the valedictorian’s cousin.”

“The valedictorian was Mary Ann Reagan. She lived on a farm near the village of Galt, Illinois, Whiteside County, Hopkins Township. Her uncle and family lived in an apartment over a store in Tampico, Ill. about 12 miles from Galt. They kept in touch by telephone. When the baby was born Mary Ann and her family went to her uncle’s place in Tampico to help with the birth of the baby. The graduation ceremony was in Morrison, the County seat about 12 miles from Galt in the opposite direction. There were very few cars in 1911.

“It was held early that year because farmers are too busy in May to go to a graduation. Five years after the graduation nine farmers organized a milk route. Every ninth day it was my turn to drive a two-horse wagon with about thirty 10-gallon cans of milk to the condensing factory in Sterling. On the way home I would stop at a little store in Galt for groceries. I was in love with the girl across the road from the store and when she saw me tie my horses to the hitching post she would come over to talk to me. One day she brought a little boy along and said, “I want you to meet little Ronny Reagan.” I said “Hi Ronny”. Kathryn said “Tell George what you are going to be when you grow up.” Ronny said, “President of the United States”. I said, “Fine. When you get big you run for President and I will vote for you”. Kathryn Bowman said, “There you have one vote already. Just keep on being nice to everybody and when you get big everybody will vote for you. Kathryn also had said “Tell George how old you are”. He held up five fingers and said “Five.” I said, “I remember when you were born.” ’ ”

Ronald Reagan was the greatest Chief of State with whom America was blessed during the 20th century.

Unfortunately, as Chief of Government, he over-delegated to subordinates who did not share the philosophy which he had articulated over a lifetime, and he presided over many decisions which were highly unfortunate, including his State Department’s support for Communist regimes in Africa and the decision of his Chief Political Adviser, Mitch Daniels, to encourage GOP Senate candidates up for re-election in 1986 to override the President’s veto of sanctions on South Africa. 

Perhaps his most courageous and important decision was to install Pershing missiles in Germany, which missiles could land on a dime in the men’s room of the Kremlin in ten minutes. This, as much as anything, held the Kremlin bosses in abeyance. 

There is much more which can and should be said, but for now we pray for the eternal rest in Heaven for this fine Christian gentleman.

Howard Phillips
The Conservative Caucus

June 7, 2004

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Photograph of Ronald and Nancy Reagan © 1984-2010 Art Harman.  All rights reserved.  Unauthorized use prohibited.