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Younger brother of President Donald Trump dies in New York hospital

Earlier in the day, Trump described Robert, who was born two years after Trump and was a business executive and real estate developer, as a wonderful brother. (Reuters)

Robert Trump, the younger brother of Donald Trump, has died, a day after the president visited his “best friend” in a New York hospital. President Trump made a last-minute trip to New York on Friday to meet his ailing 71-year-old brother. “It is with heavy heart I share that my wonderful brother, Robert, peacefully passed away tonight. He was not just my brother, he was my best friend,” Trump, 74, said in a late-night statement on Saturday. “He will be greatly missed, but we will meet again. His memory will live on in my heart forever. Robert, I love you. Rest in peace,” Trump said.

Robert, who took blood thinners, had experienced brain bleeds that began after a recent fall, The New York Times quoted a close friend of the family’s. He had been in poor health since last month. He was recently admitted to the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital in Manhattan where he breathed his last.

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Earlier in the day, Trump described Robert, who was born two years after Trump and was a business executive and real estate developer, as a wonderful brother. “We’ve had a great relationship for a long time, from Day 1, a long time ago,” Trump said. The two had an estranged relationship for years, before Trump ran for the White House, the daily said.

Trump is expected to attend his brother’s funeral. However, no details were immediately available on his plans.
“Uncle Robert, we love you. You are in our hearts and prayers, always,” Ivanka Trump posted on Twitter Saturday night.

The president called his brother’s hospital room late on Saturday as it seemed his death was near, two people familiar with the matter told CNN. It is not clear whether they connected or whether Robert’s condition allowed him to speak by phone with the president.

Separately, several people who spoke to Trump on Saturday said he appeared saddened by the impending loss of his brother. The younger Trump was previously hospitalised in June with an undisclosed serious condition. He served as an executive vice president of the Trump Organization. Part of his duties including overseeing the organisation’s Atlantic City casinos.

Born in 1948, Robert was the youngest of the four siblings to the president, including the late Fred Trump, Jr.
In June, Robert filed a temporary restraining order in an attempt to block the publication of an unflattering tell-all book by Mary Trump, Fred Trump Jr.’s daughter, CNN reported.

Robert said in a statement to The New York Times at the time that he was “deeply disappointed” in Mary’s decision to publish the book, which included details about the president’s family, childhood and upbringing, the report said.
Trump once described his younger brother as “much quieter and easygoing than I am,” and “the only guy in my life whom I ever call ‘honey’”.

Robert began his career on Wall Street working in corporate finance but later joined the family business, managing real estate holdings as a top executive in the Trump Organization, the USA Today reported. Before divorcing his first wife Blaine Trump more than a decade ago, Robert Trump had been active on Manhattan’s Upper East Side charity circuit. He avoided the limelight during his elder brother’s presidency, having retired to the Hudson Valley. But he described himself as a big supporter of the White House run in a 2016 interview with the New York Post.

“I support Donald one thousand per cent, Robert had said.

In early March of 2020, he married his longtime girlfriend, Ann Marie Pallan. Former Vice President Joe Biden, who will challenge Donald Trump in the November 3 presidential election, offered condolences on Sunday to the president after his younger brother Robert Trump died.

“Mr. President, Jill and I are sad to learn of your younger brother Robert’s passing,” Biden said on Twitter. “I know the tremendous pain of losing a loved one  and I know how important family is in moments like these. I hope you know that our prayers are with you all.”

Biden’s running mate Kamala Harris and her husband, also expressed her condolences and “prayers” to the Trump family. “Doug and I join the Biden family in sending our deepest condolences and prayers to the entire Trump family during this difficult time. Losing a loved one is never easy but know that we are thinking of you,” Harris tweeted.

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