06/10/1985 at 01:00 AM EDT
The Reagans and the Royals
For Pete's sake, give the Reagans (PEOPLE, May 20) a break. Of course the President had lots of security in Europe. Would you prefer that he be shot again? Of course Mrs. Reagan wore beautiful clothes. Would you prefer that her wardrobe come from a discount store as she travels to represent our country? I'm proud of how they handled themselves on a long and tiring trip.
Mrs. R.D. Anderson
Charles and Diana don't need 700 security people or a quarter of a million dollars' worth of clothing to impress and win over a country. They are already the most popular and loved couple in the world. The Reagans however are not, and so they have to try harder to make a tour successful.
Your comparison of the admittedly troubled Reagan tour of Europe with the relatively carefree trip of Charles and Diana was unfair. It should also have included a comparison of each couple's place in world politics. Reagan is a head of state with all the pressures and conflicts that go with the job. Charles and Diana's primary occupation seems to be to appear as cute as possible and to be well-dressed for every occasion. This charmingly innocent pair of royal dimwits inevitably comes off looking better in a contest like the one you created in this issue.
New York City
We were moved by the touching article that Jesse Birnbaum wrote about the death of his grandson, Jamie. As we each read the article, we wished that we could give to all those who have lost a loved child part of the joy our family brings us every day. How often we do not appreciate what we have. The next time that we get irritated over some small incident with our children, we will think of Mr. Birnbaum's words and remember how good we have it.
Doug and Rose
Our daughter, Emily Sophia, died on March 6, 1985, also of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. She was 2 months old. I had named her for my grandmother, Sophie, who came alone to the U.S. at the age of 15, a Hungarian immigrant who spoke no English. I wanted to give Emily the gift of my memories of my grandmother. Instead Emily has become a gift to us. She touched many lives and hearts in those two short months. We will always remember the joy and wonder of her birth, the grief and sorrow at her death, and we will always love her. Emily used to smile in her sleep. When she did, her grandmother would say that she was playing with the angels. I hope so. Please remind your readers of the National SIDS Foundation, 2 Metro Plaza, Suite 205, 8240 Professional Place, Landover, Md. 20785. This group supports research and provides referrals to local chapters that organize support groups and peer-to-peer counseling. And thank you for this chance to share our baby's story.
Maryann and Tom
Outside Maryland, you can phone 800-221-SIDS.—ED.
I was angered by your disregard for Julio Iglesias' privacy in printing a photograph of him sunbathing with his friend. Celebrities are people too.
Stevens Point, Wis.
Susan Lucci has always been one of my favorite actresses. But after reading the letter in PEOPLE in which she thanked her fans for electing her "Best Actress in a Soap," I now know another reason she received that vote. Any actress as busy as Ms. Lucci who takes the time to thank her fans deserves such recognition and more.
Mount Lake Park, Md.
In 1979 we lost our father after a six-year struggle with Alzheimer's. He was just 66. When he was diagnosed, my family had never heard of Alzheimer's. We began searching in medical books, encyclopedias and anywhere else that might help us understand this disease, but found virtually no information. So we lived those six years from day to day, with no idea what tomorrow might bring. We gave Daddy all our love and patience, and somehow we made it through. Now because of articles like yours people are not in the dark anymore, and I know thousands of families thank you.
Aside from the victim himself, it is the caretaker of the Alzheimer's patient who suffers the most. Even immediate family members who are not on the premises or not directly involved in the round-the-clock care cannot begin to imagine the stress and anguish the person in charge must bear.
Park Ridge, Ill.
I want to thank Carl Arrington for his excellent article concerning Alzheimer's and the Desert Life Health Care Center in Arizona. All too often you hear only horror stories about nursing homes. My mother and I work in nursing homes, and we have found that despite the difficulties the staff perseveres and manages to treat these people with the respect and care they deserve. We would like to think that our goals are realized in our patients' coherent moments so that they maintain their dignity. Families and staff must work together to face the future with compassion, tolerance and understanding.
Weldon Jackson Jr.
We revere our politicians, we hero-worship our great athletes and we call our movie stars beautiful people. But when we read about people like Alice Tutor and Jerry and Sandy Tucker and their eagerness to care for 5-year-old Weldon Jackson, suddenly all our standard heroes seem insignificant.