OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
Former President Donald Trump revealed that First Lady Melania Trump has not been present at the family’s holiday festivities because she is taking care of her sick mother.
At a New Year’s Eve celebration at his Mar-a-Lago property in Palm Beach, Florida, on Sunday, Donald Trump announced that his wife was attending to their 78-year-old mother, Amalija Knavs, who was “very ill,” at a hospital in Miami.
“Hopefully, she will be recovering because she was very ill,” Trump said during a speech at the event, a video of which was posted on X. “I just want to say hello to the first lady; we just spoke down in Miami at a great hospital. And hopefully, it will be OK. But it’s a tough one. She sends her love to everyone. She knows about 95% of the people in the room, and we want to wish Amalija gets better as quickly as possible.”
Melania Trump’s absence from family Christmas photos shared online initially sparked speculation about her whereabouts.
According to a source close to Melania Trump, she has always been extremely dedicated to her entire family. She spent Christmas with her sick mother, which is hardly surprising.
53-year-old Melania Trump was in attendance at the funeral for Rosalynn Carter, the former first lady, on November 29th, and gave a speech at a naturalization ceremony at the National Archives on December 15th.
Last week, Page Six reported that Melania Trump will lend her support to her husband’s 2024 Republican presidential nomination campaign by increasing her public appearances.
“Trump and his family are so secure that he will become president again that insiders at Mar-a-Lago say he’s reached an agreement with Melania Trump to step up top-tier diplomatic appearances in 2024,” a source told Page Six. “Melania realizes it’s her time to join the ranks of historic first ladies and leave her mark on history. … She feels better prepared for her potential role the second time.”
Page Six added: Donald Trump Jr.’s fiancée, Kimberly Guilfoyle, shared the image in question, which was taken at former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla., to her Instagram Story Tuesday.
The picture includes Trump Jr., Donald Trump, Guilfoyle, Barron Trump, Ivanka Trump, husband Jared Kushner, and their kids, Tiffany Trump and husband Michael Boulos. Looking all grown up, 17-year-old Barron can be seen towering in front of the Christmas tree and behind his father.
In late December, the outlet reported that Melania will be making many more public appearances on behalf of her husband as he campaigns a third time for a second term in the White House.
A source told Page Six that after the former president won a case before the U.S. Supreme Court, in which justices rejected special counsel Jack Smith’s attempt to get a quick ruling on presidential immunity, “Trump and his family are so secure that he will become president again that insiders at Mar-a-Lago say he’s reached an agreement with (wife) Melania (Trump) to step up top-tier diplomatic appearances in 2024.”
The source went on to say that after Melania appeared with other first ladies at Rosalynn Carter’s funeral recently, she is “feeling more sure of herself—as both her husband’s representative and her position as a diplomatic figure—after her positive reception at the Carter funeral.”
She also recently spoke at a citizenship naturalization ceremony at the National Archives.
“Melania realizes it’s her time to join the ranks of historic first ladies and leave her mark on history… She feels better prepared for her potential role the second time,” the source told Page Six. “The immediate family, including Melania, is solidly behind the former president.”
Melania has openly supported her husband’s third White House bid. Still, she has also “quietly” taken measures to protect herself and their son, Barron, behind the scenes, a report noted in September.