What was remarkable about Ronald Reagan

Ronald Reagan (Ronald Wilson Reagan), who later became the 40th President of the United States of America, was the youngest son of the impoverished shoe seller of Irish descent John Edward Reagan on February 6, 19111) (1883 - 1941) and his wife Nelle Clyde1) (1883-1962) born in Tampico (Illinois). Grew up with his older brother Neil1) (1908 - 1996), he attended "Dixon High School" and "Eureka College" in Illinois and graduated in 1932 with a degree in economics and sociology. He then worked until 1937 as a sports commentator for a small radio station in Davenport (Iowa) and as a reporter for the "Chicago Cubs"2). When he was earning extra income with commercials, talent scouts from "Warner Brothers" discovered the smart, good-looking 1.90 meter man and in 1937 offered him a seven-year contract. After his screen debut in "Love is in The Air" (1937), he mainly played heroes in B-films, cheap productions that ran after the main film, shallow dramas or action films. During the Second World War, Reagan made training films for the "Air Force", films like "Kings Row" (1941) or "Prisoner of War" (1954), classified as "average" by the US press, never found their way into Europe Cinemas.
Reagan was seen as a gangster, a Ku Klux Klan man, a war hero, and a sheriff. Reagan's participation in A-films was largely limited to supporting roles such as that of "best friend", whom he played in Michael Curtiz's 1940 western "Land of the Godless"2) (Santa Fe Trail) embodied Errol Flynn's opponent.

Official portrait (1981) of US President Ronald Reagan
Source: Courtesy "Ronald Reagan Library" or Wikimedia Commons
Author: Unknown; Information on the license see here

But at least once, in his last film, he showed a remarkable achievement: In Don Siegel's extremely free Hemingway adaptation "The Death of a Killer"2) (The Killers) in 1964 he played an evil gang boss at the side of Angie Dickinson and John Cassavetes, who beat up his lover and otherwise dealt with people in a very rude manner.
Often times, Reagan embodied elegant and respectable personalities with solid morals and principles. He earned a reputation as "James Stewart for Poor People" in the early 1950s with leading roles in several smaller westerns. In addition, he also worked regularly as a narrator and narrator for films, such as the Oscar-winning short film "Beyond the Line of Duty"2). noted Wikipedia.

In 1952 he married the actress Nancy Davis2) (1921 - 2016), with whom he had two children, Patricia Ann2) (born 1952) and Ronald "Ron" Prescott2) (born 1958), had; Both children later worked intensively for American television, daughter Patti also made a name for herself as a writer. It was Reagan's second marriage after his divorce in 1948 from actress Jane Wyman3) (1917 - 2007), whom he married on January 26, 1940: Two children, daughter Maureen Elizabeth Reagan, also came from this connection 1) (1941-2001) and the adopted son Michael Reagan1) (born 1945); their daughter Christine Reagan, born in 1947, died a few hours after giving birth.

"Ronnie" showed political engagement for the first time at the end of the 1940s: In view of the anti-employee contract policies of the "Warner Brothers", he decided to do something about it and in 1947 became president of the "Screen Actors Guild".2). By the time he was drafted into the "US Army" in 1942, he had already made 29 of his 50 or so films. In the 1950s, Reagan cut back his acting work in favor of his involvement as a TV presenter. He received another lucrative part-time job as head of the television program and conférencier in the 137 branches of the industrial group "General Electric", which paid for his efforts with an annual salary of 125,000 dollars. By the mid-1960s, Reagan returned to the big screen on a regular basis, but focused more and more on his political career.
A year after the publication of his autobiography "Where's the rest of me?" (1965, Where's the rest of me?) Became the Republican governor of California; In 1976 he narrowly missed the presidential nomination. Numerous actor colleagues had supported him in his election campaign. Bob Hope3) and John Wayne3), Dean Martin3) and Frank Sinatra3), James Cagney3) and James Stewart3) had accompanied Reagan through Indiana, South Carolina, and Texas. Four years later, Reagan was successful in his renewed candidacy and was elected 40th President of the United States.
Henry Kissinger2) once claimed that Reagan wanted to be John Wayne, and Reagan envied his role at least twice over an ex-colleague: George G. Scott2), as this the great war strategist of the 2nd World War General George S. Patton2) in "Patton - Rebel in Uniform"
2) (1970, Patton) played, and Gregory Peck3)who ruled Brigadier General Douglas MacArthur in 19761)  just that year in "MacArthur - Hero of the Pacific"2) (1977, MacArthur) portrayed when Reagan fell short of his presidential grade goal and wanted to be a screen hero again. But the small actor Ronald Reagan never made it to great cinema honors in his 53 films.

His tenure as President of the United States of America between 1981 and 1989 saw the end of the Cold War, the opening of the Soviet Union, glasnost and perestroika. In foreign policy he cannot be denied great successes, while domestically he widened the gap between rich and poor; The term "Reaganomics" is applied to this type of economic policy.

In 1994, Ronald Reagan withdrew completely from public life; With a moving letter the Reagans had informed the Americans that the former president was suffering from the cruel Alzheimer's disease. "By opening our hearts, we hope to increase public awareness of this disease," they justified their move. The letter ended with the incomparable Reagan pathos that Americans loved so much about their president: "I am now starting the journey that will take me to the sunset of my life. I know that there will always be a glorious sunrise for America . "
Ten years later, the former American president died on June 5, 2004 with his family in Bel Air, California at the age of 93 of pneumonia as a result of his longstanding illness. During the five-day memorial service that followed, the Americans and numerous guests from all over the world were able to say goodbye to the 40th President of the USA: Reagan's body was kept for two days in the Reagan Presidential Library ("Ronald Reagan Presidential Library")2)) laid out in Simi Valley, California, many waits up to seven hours to pay their respects to the late president; Among the visitors were numerous celebrities from politics and society. The coffin with the remains was then transferred to Washington and laid out in the Capitol, before being brought to the cathedral in a solemn procession through the federal capital on June 10; Numerous high-ranking guests from home and abroad took part in the following state ceremony. Then the deceased found his final resting place on the grounds of the "Ronald Reagan Presidential Library" in Simi Valley → Photos of the grave site at knerger.de.