When my grandma was in her teens, she sent the actor Ronald Reagan a letter. He replied with an autographed picture. So she sent another letter and he replied with another autographed picture. She wasn't satisfied, and wanted an actual response. So she told him that every word that he writes, she will donate a dollar to a charity. Finally, Ronald Reagan replied with a hand-written letter. This sparked a friendship, and even a possible romantic interest. Their writing went on for a long time, and all told, Reagan wrote her about 10 hand written letters. Those letters are sadly lost to history. However, here are some journal entries from my grandma in 1943.
When she was younger, my grandma was considered a beautiful girl. And so, a couple years ago, before she passed away, I asked her if Reagan was ever interested in her. "Oooh yeah," she said. However, she said her strict Catholic mother wouldn't allow her to pursue someone so famous. Yet, their pen-pal friendship continued and she and my grandfather met Reagan later in life after a personal invitation to the white house. I'm often curious if Ronald Reagan saved her letters. Perhaps my grandma's old words are stored away somewhere in Reagan's former belongings. Maybe, I'd like to think, somewhere Nancy Reagan couldn't find them.
Virginia and Gene Eggers wedding photo (my grandma and grandpa)