Tremendous speculation has surrounded the lengthy, 24-day lack of first lady sightings, spawning conspiracy theories and concerns.
First lady Melania Trump is expected to attend a White House event on Monday evening to honor Gold Star families, spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham confirms in a public report.
While the President and Mrs. Trump hosted a similar event in 2017, this year’s reception will mark the first time she has participated in an official event, either alone or by her husband’s side, since May 10 when the first couple greeted freed American prisoners upon their return to Andrews Air Force Base following captivity in North Korea.
Notably, four days later, the first lady entered Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, for what Grisham described as a benign kidney procedure.
Mrs. Trump remained hospitalized for five nights following the procedure, returning to the White House on May 19.
Since then, Trump has not been seen in public, nor did she join the President, his children Donald Trump Jr., and Tiffany Trump, daughter and adviser Ivanka Trump, and son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner, at Camp David this weekend.
In face of her planned attendance at Monday’s event, the first lady will not be traveling to the G7 summit this year or join the President when he goes to Singapore for the planned June 12 summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, her spokeswoman told CNN.
The White House released the following statement about the coming event with these remarks from Mrs. Trump: “Gold Star families have lost an immediate family member who was serving during wartime, and they are a unique and distinct category of individuals who should be cherished. These families have endured the ultimate in pain and sacrifice on behalf of our country, and I am honored to have spent the evening with them. My husband and I commit to always pay tribute to our active service military, veterans, and the families who love them.”
Grisham told the press and CNN that the first lady has been holding meetings with her East Wing staff about her platform initiatives, as well as planning for upcoming White House events.