Remembering Nancy Reagan: The Love Story Between the Former Presidential Pair

Nancy and Ronald Reagan Wedding

Photo: Getty Images

On Sunday, Former First Lady Nancy Reagan passed away at the age of 94. According to a statement made by the Reagan library, she died of congestive heart failure. However, her heart is precisely what people will remember best about the Former First Lady, whose steadfast love and dedication to her husband, Former President Ronald Reagan, was infamous.

"When I say my life began with Ronnie, well, it's true. It did," she said in a 1998 Vanity Fair article. And that life that they ended up sharing was certainly one for the (history) books.

According to ABC News, the future presidential pair met while they were both still working in Hollywood. "I don't know if it was exactly love at first sight," Nancy Reagan once shared, "But it was pretty close." Three years later on March 4, 1952, the couple wed in an intimate Los Angeles ceremony at the Little Brown Church. The best man? Fellow actor William Holden. His wife, Brenda Marshall, served as the matron of honor.

Nancy Reagan

Photo: Getty Images

The Reagans went on to star side by side in the 1957 film, Hellcats of Navy, before Ronald Reagan set his sights on a political career. And from campaigning for her husband's 1966 bid for governor to supporting him through his eventual presidential candidacy and two terms, Nancy was there with her support and constant loving looks, which became famously known to the public as "The Gaze."

Throughout her years as First Lady, Nancy Reagan became infamous for her advocacy efforts with the Foster Grandparents program and her staunch support of anti-drug efforts and education programs. She also became the very first First Lady to address the U.N. General Assembly in 1988 in a speech concerning international drug trafficking — all the while supporting the love of her life.

Nancy and Ronald Reagan Photo

Photo: Getty Images

After Reagan's assassination attempt in 1981, Nancy very much became her husband's protector, from memorizing his schedule to consulting a psychic on his travel plans. "You have to understand, Ronald Reagan was the sun in Nancy's life, and to see him almost killed was the realization of her worst nightmare" an ABC News correspondent said in a statement following the assassination attempt.

Her role as his constant caretaker continued when the Former President was later diagnosed with Alzheimer's and she remained by his side until his death in 2004.

Nancy and Ronald Reagan

Photo: Getty Images

The love story between the presidential pair will always be remembered through Nancy's 2001 book, I Love You, Ronnie: The Letters of Ronald Reagan to Nancy Reagan. "Mr. Reagan loves you with all his heart," Ronald once wrote to his wife. "Whatever I treasure and enjoy — this home, our ranch, the sight of the sea — all would be without meaning if I didn't have you... Mad or glad Mr. Reagan is head over heels in love with Mrs. Reagan and can't even imagine a world without her."

Neither can we.

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