Simi Valley, California –Ronald and Nancy Reagan had the greatest admiration for Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, and it is with great sorrow and heavy hearts that we heard of her passing. On behalf of the entire Reagan Foundation and Institute Board of Trustees, we send our thoughts and prayers to the Royal Family and to all of Great Britain.
President Reagan often had to remind himself when they were together that she was the Queen because even though she was very proper, when the doors were closed and the press was gone, President Reagan and Queen Elizabeth II felt very comfortable with one another, and they looked forward to whenever they could get together. During a 1983 interview with the London Sunday Times, President Reagan called the Queen “a truly fine and gracious lady” and a “delightful person.”
One of President and Mrs. Reagan’s fondest memories of being President and first lady was in 1983 when they were guests aboard the royal yacht Britannia for their thirty-first wedding anniversary. Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip gifted the Reagans a beautiful engraved silver box which is still on display in their private offices at the Reagan Library. During toasts at dinner that night, President Reagan joked, “I know I promised Nancy a lot when we were married, but how can I ever top this?”
Her Majesty the Queen was not only the longest-serving monarch in British history, but she was loved by her country and millions across the world. During her reign she never lost her commitment or passion for her role, and she helped to keep the monarchy relevant to the ideals and aspirations of newer generations. In 1991 she was the first British Monarch to address the United States Congress, something President Reagan was delighted to see.
Ronald Reagan was deeply honored when after leaving office in 1989, Queen Elizabeth II presented him with a knighthood and bestowed upon him the Most Honourable Order of the Bath. For the President, it truly was a culmination of their close relationship over the years.
She was both the longest-serving monarch in British history and a kind soul who treasured her family. Her family and all of the British people have our deepest sympathies and prayers at this difficult time.Download Press Release