NEW YORK (AP) — Ivana Trump, who formed half of a headline-making couple in the 1980s as the first wife of Donald Trump, the real estate developer and tabloid regular who went on to win a White House term, has died in New York City, her family announced Thursday. She was 73.
“I am very saddened to inform all of those that loved her, of which there are many, that Ivana Trump has passed away at her home in New York City,” the former president posted on Truth Social. “She was a wonderful, beautiful, and amazing woman, who led a great and inspirational life. Her pride and joy were her three children, Donald Jr., Ivanka, and Eric. She was so proud of them, as we were all so proud of her. Rest In Peace, Ivana!”
The former president’s three eldest children also released a statement. “It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved mother, Ivana Trump. Our mother was an incredible woman — a force in business, a world-class athlete, a radiant beauty, and caring mother and friend. Ivana Trump was a survivor.”
The Trumps were a noteworthy couple in the New York of the 1980s, before their equally public, and messy, divorce after Donald Trump met the second of his three wives, Marla Maples. But in recent years Ivana Trump had been on good terms with her former husband. She wrote in a 2017 book that they spoke about once a week.
Ivana told the New York Post in 2016 that she was both a supporter and adviser to the former president.
“I suggest a few things,” she told the paper. “We speak before and after [his] appearances, and he asks me what I thought.”
She said she advised him to “be more calm.”
“But Donald cannot be calm,” she observed. “He’s very outspoken.”
She was born Ivana Zelníčková in 1949 in the Czechoslovak city of Gottwaldov, the former Zlín, a city in the Moravia region that had been renamed for the country’s first communist leader when, a year earlier, the Communist Party took control of the country. She married Trump, her second husband, in 1977.