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Nancy Reagan falls, to be hospitalized overnight

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Nancy Reagan, wife of former U.S. President Ronald Reagan, fell at her Los Angeles home on Sunday morning and is staying overnight at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica for observation, her spokeswoman said.

"As a precaution, her family physician felt it best to admit her ... for overnight evaluation. She is doing well and is visiting with friends in her room," Joanne Drake, spokeswoman for Nancy Reagan said in a statement.

Former first lady Nancy Reagan is seen California January 30, 2008. (REUTERS/Danny Moloshok)

The 86-year-old former First Lady last month attended the recent Republican debates at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.

She married Ronald Reagan in 1952 and is one of the most influential and controversial First Ladies America has known.

The former actress helped her husband survive such blows as an assassination attempt and cancer surgery during his presidency, which spanned from 1981 through 1989.

Former President Reagan suffered from Alzheimer's disease before his death in 2004. Nancy Reagan advocated for stem cell research, siding against prominent Republicans, including current President George W. Bush.

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