Reagan’s Condition Worsens
Ronald Reagan’s children gathered at his bedside Saturday as word reached the White House that the health of the 93-year-old former president had seriously deteriorated.
White House officials who checked on the former president’s health Friday were told “the time is getting close,” a person familiar with Reagan’s health, who did not want to be identified, told The Associated Press. “It could be weeks. It could be months.”
The Reagan family’s chief of staff, Joanne Drake, said his children from his marriage to Nancy, Patti Davis and Ron, were at the Reagan home in the Bel-Air area of Los Angeles.
“This is it,” Nancy Reagan told CBS News correspondent Mike Wallace.
“I said is it conceivable that it could happen this weekend? She said, yes, yes,” Wallace told CBS radio.
Reagan, who has lived longer than any other U.S. president, has been out of the public eye since disclosing a decade ago that he had Alzheimer’s disease.
“He’s 93 years old. He’s had Alzheimer’s disease for 10 years. There are plenty of rumors. When there is something significant to report I will do so,” Drake said.
Certainly a shame. Reagan is the first president that I was old enough to vote for (his re-election in 1984 was a few days before my 19th birthday) and his presidency was the formative period in my political consciousness. I graduated high school and college under Reagan and he was briefly my commander in chief.
I’ll certainly miss him when he’s gone, although the sad nature of his demise has kept him out of the public consciousness for a long time. It has been some time since he even had the ability to recognize his family. His passing will be somewhat bittersweet because of that.