The mother of three of Donald Trump’s children and his first wife, Ivana, passed away at the age of 73.
She “lived a magnificent and inspirational life,” Mr. Trump said on his social media network Truth Social. “She was a wonderful, gorgeous, and remarkable woman.”
The former president and Ms. Trump, who was born in what is now the Czech Republic, wed in 1977. They were divorced in 1992, 15 years later.
Eric Trump, Ivanka Trump, and Donald Jr. are their three children together.
The Associated Press reports that police suspect an accident as the cause of death.
At her New York City residence, Ms. Trump was discovered unconscious next to a stairway, according to sources who spoke to the news agency. It is thought that she may have fallen.
In the 1980s and 1990s, Donald and Ivana Trump were well-known public celebrities in New York, and their divorce generated a great deal of attention from the general public.
Ms. Trump launched her own businesses of jewelry, apparel, and cosmetics after they divorced.
In her 2017 biography Raising Trump, she claimed responsibility for raising their children and claimed that she “made the decisions concerning their schooling, activities, travel, child care, and allowances” until college.
She stated in the book that she spoke to Mr. Trump roughly once a week and added that their friendship has improved after their divorce.
She was praised as “a force in business, a world-class athlete, a dazzling beauty, and a devoted mother and friend” by the Trump family in a statement.
“Ivana Trump was a survivor. She fled from communism and embraced this country,” the statement added. “She taught her children about grit and toughness, compassion and determination.” Ivanka Trump, who was said to be very close to her mother, said in an Instagram post she was “heartbroken”. “Mom was brilliant, charming, passionate and wickedly funny. She modelled strength, tenacity and determination in her every action. She lived life to the fullest – never forgoing an opportunity to laugh and dance,” she wrote. Mr Trump was Ivana’s second husband. Her first, Alfred Winklmayr, was an Austrian ski instructor and friend who she reportedly married in order to obtain Austrian citizenship. That marriage allowed her to leave her communist home country – which was then Czechoslovakia – without defecting. A long-time skier, Ms Trump is said to have skied competitively in the country. But Mr Trump’s claims that she was an alternate on the 1972 Winter Olympics team were refuted in 1989 by a local Olympic official. While living in Canada in the 1970s, she worked as a ski instructor and model. On a work trip to New York City in 1976, she met Mr Trump while with a group of models.
They were married the following year and quickly became a tabloid fixture. Over the course of their marriage, Ms Trump held several roles within the Trump Organization, including as manager of the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan. But Mr Trump reportedly locked her out of her office at the hotel in 1990 as they sparred over four pre-nuptial agreements.
When the divorce settlement was finalised in 1992, Ms Trump had signed a non-disclosure agreement but also received $14m (£11.8m) and a mansion in Connecticut among other things.
She was also married twice more: to Italian businessman Riccardo Mazzucchelli, from 1995-97; and to Italian actor Rossano Rubicondi, from 2008-09. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani wrote on Twitter that Ms Trump was “a truly talented, creative and beautiful person”, who had “contributed greatly” to his city.
Republican senator and staunch Trump supporter Lindsey Graham stated, “She lived the American Dream.”
Ms. Trump stated to ABC’s Good Morning America in 2017 that she didn’t want to phone Mr. Trump at the White House because she didn’t want to enrage his present wife Melania. “In essence, I’m First Trump Wife. OK? First lady, she declared.
It was just one of the former model’s many famous sayings. She advised irate divorcees in a cameo appearance in the 1996 film The First Wives Club: “Ladies, you have to be tough and independent. And always remember: “Get everything, don’t get mad.”