AP: Nick Jonas, Jordin Sparks chair Reagan youth
They weren’t even alive when he was president, but 18-year-old Jonas brother Nick Jonas and 21-year-old “American Idol” champ Jordin Sparks are big Ronald Reagan fans.
Jonas and Sparks are leading a committee of 35 prominent young people touched by the life of the Gipper, the nation’s 40th president who left the White House in 1989.
The group was formed to commemorate Reagan’s 100th birthday on Feb. 6.
The National Youth Leadership Committee of the Ronald Reagan Centennial Celebration includes athletes, entertainers and student leaders who are under age 25. They have been inspired in a personal way by Reagan’s vision of freedom and his leadership.
“My father and my family were supporters of Reagan,” Jonas said. “I’m proud to be a part of this. It’s amazing.”
Sparks says she also admires the president dubbed the Great Communicator.
“It has been really cool to tell my friends I’m a part of this. A good many of my friends have positive things to say about him,” Sparks said.
Together, committee members have 18 Olympic medals, 2 platinum records and a Miss USA crown. There are sailors aboard the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan, professional football players and a student from Illinois’ Eureka College, where Reagan was a student in 1932.
Reagan died on June 5, 2004, after a decade-long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.
Editor’s note: Headline comes from Associated Press. As Wikipedia notes, Reagan Youth was the name of a recently reformed 80s/90s hardcore “aggressively anarchist, socialist, and anti-racist band, who often utilized Ku Klux Klan and Nazi Party imagery for satirical effect. In their original 1980s incarnation, they sought to address the perceived parallels between the policies of Ronald Reagan, the Christian Right and American conservatism, and the beliefs of the hate groups.”