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A Private Letter from Ronald Reagan to His Dying Father-In-Law

A Private Letter from Ronald Reagan to His Dying Father-In-Law
Image: pbombaert / Getty

Something tugged at Ronald Reagan on that August weekend in 1982. The President noted in his diary: “More of Saturdays work plus a long letter I have to write to Loyal. I’m afraid for him. His health is failing badly.” Loyal Davis, Reagan’s father-in-law and a neurosurgeon, was just days away from death.

Something else worried Reagan: The dying man was an atheist. Davis once wrote, “I have never been able to subscribe to the divinity ...

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