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Reagans Fly to Phoenix to Plan Her Mother's Funeral

October 27, 1987|From Times Wire Services

PHOENIX — President Reagan and his wife, Nancy, after "a very tearful night" for the First Lady, flew here today to make funeral arrangements for Mrs. Reagan's mother, Edith Luckett Davis.

The First Lady, appearing in public for the first time wearing glasses, wore a black-and-white suit with a white blouse as she headed hand in hand with her husband for the helicopter ride from the White House to Air Force One.

Dr. John Hutton, the White House physician, said Mrs. Reagan, who underwent breast cancer surgery on Oct. 17, is "fine" and "absolutely" up to making the trip.

On arrival the Reagans headed first to a funeral home to make arrangements, then to the Davis home.

Reagan to Return Today

The President, who broke the news to his wife Monday of her mother's death at age 91, was to return to Washington late today, and then return to Phoenix later this week for the funeral.

Mrs. Reagan, who returned to the White House only last Thursday after having her left breast removed, was very upset Monday, her press secretary, Elaine Crispen, said aboard Air Force One.

"She's going through some old photographs of her mother. (She's) very teary," Crispin said. "She spent a very tearful night. It was not a good sleeping night."

Among those on board Air Force One with the Reagans was Deputy White House Chief of Staff Kenneth M. Duberstein and the First Lady's chief of staff, Jack L. Courtemanche.

Doctors and Medics

Two military doctors, including Hutton, and two military medics were on board, and a doctor and a medic were to remain in Phoenix with Mrs. Reagan, officials said.

Crispen said that all members of the Reagan and Davis families had been informed and that all the Reagan children except daughter Patti and her husband, Paul Grilley, who "have other travel plans," will be in Phoenix for the funeral.

Crispen said Edith Davis, on one of Mrs. Reagan's recent visits to Phoenix, had two small boxes packed up with "little treasures, little mementos" for Patti and grandson Ron, to be given to them on her death.

Davis obituary, Page 3.

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