His language did not have the speechwriter-polished sheen we associate with the president who came to be known as the Great Communicator. It was an intimate, humble profession of faith. He was “Ronnie,” assuring his father-in-law: “We’ve been promised this is only a part of life and that a greater glory awaits us.”

It was “a miracle,” Reagan wrote, that “a young man of 30 yrs. without credentials as a scholar or priest” had “more impact on the world than all the teachers, scientists, emperors, generals and admirals who ever lived, all put together.”

“Either he was who he said he was or he was the greatest faker & charlatan who ever lived. But would a liar & faker suffer the death he did?”