Lyndon Baines Johnson was born in Texas but spent much of his career in Washington, D.C. He married Claudia “Lady Bird” Alta Taylor in 1934; she was one of America’s most active First Ladies, tirelessly advocating for her husband and career; her most lasting achievement was the Highway Beautification Act well as her efforts to promote public education. The couple had two children who carried on their parents’ tradition of civic participation.
Lynda Bird Johnson
Lynda Bird Johnson was born in Washington, D.C., and was named after both of her parents on March 19, 1944. Lynda Bird Johnson was born after her mother, Lady Bird, had three miscarriages, and her doctor claimed that she would not be able to have any more children, so her father proposed that she be named after both her parents. As a result, she is known as “Lynda Bird.”
One of her first gifts was a book about President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Scottish terrier, Fala, inscribed “To Lynda Bird Johnson from the Master of the Pup.” Lynda held a birthday party for Speaker of the House, Sam Rayburn, when she was just five years old, thanks to her early exposure to the media. Perhaps the political lessons sunk so profoundly, and when Lynda Bird was nine, her parents declined to let her mount a scary horse ride.
Lynda Bird went to high school and the Episcopal National Cathedral School for Girls in Washington, D.C., before enrolling at the University of Texas to study history.
Like all modern-day presidential daughters, Lynda’s life was scrutinized—as were her romantic decisions, which included a romance with actor George Hamilton. Before meeting the actor George Hamilton, who had been engaged to Susan Kohner. On the other hand, Johnson was engaged to Bernard Rosenbach. Johnson and Hamilton started dating in 1966. The Hamilton-Johnson pair was one of the first to be covered by Secret Service agents due to an expansion in Secret Service surveillance of Presidential families following the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
In 1967, Johnson married U.S. Marine Corps Captain Charles S. Robb, the son of Frances Howard and James Spittal Robb, in the East Room of the White House, in a ceremony officiated by the Right Reverend Gerald Nicholas McAllister. Her husband distinguished himself in Vietnam. From 1978 to 1982, Charles Robb served as Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, Governor of Virginia, and U.S. Senator from Virginia.
Lynda Bird, like her mother, devoted all of her time to raising her family and supporting her husband’s political career. She became a member of President Carter’s Advisory Committee for Women in 1979 and later chaired the Reading is Fundamental (RIF), a children’s literature association. She is also a member of the Lyndon Baines Johnson Foundation’s board of directors.
Luci Baines Johnson
Luci Johnson has an older sibling, Lynda Bird, who was born in Washington, D.C. Luci’s first name was initially spelled “Lucy”; she changed the spelling in her youth as a protest against her parents. Her parents shared the initials LBJ, so their two daughters were given these initials as well.
Unlike her older sibling, Luci spent many years in the White House. She was a conspicuous figure during that period, not just because she attended formal events but also because of her vocal views and unabashed love of the Beatles. In the mid-1960s, Luci’s roles made her a role model for American teenagers.
Her father was a Christian, but her mother was an Episcopalian, and she and her older sister, Lynda Bird, were brought up as Episcopalians. Johnson became a Roman Catholic when he was eighteen years old.
On November 22, 1963, she was sixteen years old when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas. While in a Spanish class at the National Cathedral School, Johnson learned of the assassination. She had no idea if her father had been hurt, but when Secret Service officers arrived on her school campus a couple of hours later, she learned he had been sworn in as the United States president. She went on to Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies but dropped out in 1966 because married students were not allowed. In August 1966, Luci Johnson married her first husband.
When antiwar protesters gathered outside the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C., she married Patrick J. Nugent. The Nugents had four children: Patrick Lyndon, now a lawyer and a pilot in San Antonio; Nicole Marie; Rebekah Johnson and Claudia Taylor Nugent; and subsequently divorced. Eventually, she became a prosperous radio communications businesswoman.
Luci married Ian J. Turpin, a Scottish-born Canadian financier who runs LBJ Asset Management Partners at LBJ Ranch, on March 3, 1984. She has a stepson from that union.
Like her older sibling, Luci has chosen to support children’s literacy, women’s welfare, nurse education, and the American Heart Association.
Luci Johnson was diagnosed with Guillain–Barré syndrome in April 2010. Landry’s paralysis is an autoimmune disease that affects the peripheral nervous system; soon, she was flown to Rochester, Minnesota, to begin treatment at the Mayo Clinic. In May 2010, Johnson returned to Austin. Her doctor described her condition as “less severe than usual,” and she made a complete recovery.