Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Reagan's birthday 2013: Tampico and Chicago and how you can help

Chicago Reagan home in 2011
Writing on the occasion of Ronald Reagan's birthday for Forbes, Mary Claire Kendall, the acting president and CEO Friends of President Reagan's Chicago Home, Inc., offers some anecdotes about Dutch's year in Chicago. On this day 102 years ago, "Dutch" was born on Main Street in tiny Tampico, Illinois.
Like the birthplace, the Hyde Park home was the scene of memories that tapped a deep well of emotion in President Reagan, evidenced by his reaction upon Mayor Jane Byrne presenting a photo of the home to him in September 1981, six months after the assassination attempt. His eyes became misty, showing a hint of tears, as he absorbed all the memories of his time living there—like when four-year-old Dutch and his six-year-old brother Neil, nicknamed "Moon," would go to White City, an amusement park a mile from their home, laden down with freshly made popcorn they would sell to amusement park patrons to help supplement the family income, increasingly diminished because of Jack's drinking habit.

As some might have heard, the home now hangs in the balance as the city and university decide whether to spare it from being demolished—and if spared, how to honor President Reagan's memory there. (No, it’s not true the block on which the home sits will be transformed into a parking garage for the Obama library.)
Ohio, IL
But, it will take money and lots of it. Toward which end the Friends of President Reagan's Chicago Home, Inc., founded by a group of devoted Reaganauts in December, incorporated just three short weeks ago, are determined to do what it takes.
Tax-deductible contributions can be mailed to:
Friends of President Reagan's Chicago Home
P.O. Box 3772
Washington, DC 20027-3772
Or if you prefer, you can use your charge card and donate here.

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