SIMI VALLEY, Calif. - The Gipper was celebrated during a Sunday gathering of loyalists on Ronald Wilson Reagan's 94th birthday, the first posthumous anniversary of his birth.
Former Gov. Pete Wilson was on hand at the celebration at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and President Bush sent a wreath that was placed at Reagan's gravesite by Camp Pendleton Marines. The Marines then honored the nation's 40th chief executive with a 21-gun salute.
"We're celebrating the 94th anniversary of the birth of one of America's truly great presidents whose legacy will live on and on. God bless his memory," Wilson said.
Reagan died June 5, 2004, at his Bel-Air home after a decade-long struggle with Alzheimer's disease. Former first lady Nancy Reagan was too emotional to attend Sunday's event, which included birthday cake served in the hilltop library's lobby.
"It's a hard day for me because my husband always loved his birthday," Mrs. Reagan told The Associated Press in a statement relayed by chief-of-staff Joanne Drake.