Nancy Reagan’s toughest battle: The ‘long, long goodbye’ to the man she loved

By the time Nancy Reagan sat down with Mike Wallace of “60 Minutes” in 2002, her eyes had lost their familiar gleam.

More than a decade out of the world spotlight, hers was now a life consumed by a torturous, private struggle. Her husband’s generous spirit — once among the most commanding on Earth — had been reduced by Alzheimer’s to a passing flicker of semi-cognizance.

In the White House, she’d developed a reputation as a fierce protector of the president, even while surrounded by allies. Now the former first lady, who had decades earlier said that her life didn’t begin until she met Ronald Reagan, was still protecting the love of her life.

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