Ronald Reagan brought America back to place of honor, justice

Published 4:11 pm Monday, June 7, 2004

By By JO FLOCK / Special to the Niles Daily Star
NILES -- I want to say goodbye.
Ronald Reagan, his name brings a smile to my heart.
Ronald Reagan had an intimate love and respect for the United States of America and each of its citizens.
In the 1980s, President Reagan initiated a grass-roots organization called Citizens for America. I was honored to be a leader in his organization here in Michigan. It was because of this volunteerism that I was invited to the White House for a reception with the President.
An aide came into the reception room where a small group of us were waiting for the President. He apologized that the President was late; he was currently in a negotiating meeting with a head of state. Later when the President came in, he again apologized for making us wait. He made me feel like I was visiting a next-door friend. He exhibited an uncommon genuineness that immediately put me at ease.
The dinner and reception was just one evening, but it was one of those "memorable" experiences that doesn't dim in a lifetime. Just to be in the White House with all the rope barricades taken down was breathtaking. We could actually sit in the same chairs that were used by former presidents. However, even this was eclipsed by the presence of the man.
Ronald Reagan exhibited his courage, his veracity, his integrity, and his sincerity as he dealt with individuals as well as governments. His strength of character came from within; his convictions came from faith in the Almighty.
The history books will record Ronald Reagan as one of our greatest presidents ever. He had a reverence for life that guided him daily. His moral strength changed history; not just for the United States, but for the entire world. He stood in the gap; he carried our country back to a place of honor and justice. He gave hope to a world living in fear of communism and a nuclear threat.
Ronald Reagan fulfilled his mandate; his legacy will stand the test of time.