The Truth About Donald Trump's Parents

Donald Trump is certainly a family man, if nothing else, hiring his daughter Ivanka and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, as presidential advisors, as well as employing his son Eric's wife, Lara, on his 2020 re-election campaign. Although, everything isn't smooth sailing in the Trump family, as the 45th president's niece Mary recently released a tell-all expose with shocking allegations, including that he paid someone else to take his SATs, according to The Guardian. What's more, his sister Maryanne Trump Barry has been heard on secretly recorded messages (by niece Mary) disparaging The Donald (via CNN).

But what of Trump's parents, who, by all accounts, he remained close to right up until the end of their lives? According to Town & Country, the president was desperate to make them proud, admitting, "You're always looking to do a little better than your parents ... deep down inside, maybe I did."

Donald Trump's father, Fred, was his biggest inspiration

Fred Trump was born into the real estate business, following in his own father's footsteps and making his fortune building affordable housing for middle-class families on the East Coast during and after WWII, per the BBC. He was a controversial figure, called before the senate in 1954 when he was accused of profiteering from government-subsidized housing contracts. He also was later the subject of a civil rights case after allegations of discrimination against Black and Puerto Rican tenants.

Donald Trump was a fierce defender of his father. It's worth noting Fred was arrested when a 1927 Ku Klux Klan rally in New York City was met with protest and ultimately turned violent, according to the Washington Post. However, he was one of seven men taken into custody, and it is not clear what role he played in the incident. Regardless, his famous son was intent on outdoing him. According to The New York Times, the president's first big purchase, thanks to a $1 million start up loan from his father, was a Manhattan hotel. He keeps a photo of Fred on his desk in the Oval Office to this day.

Donald Trump's mother, Mary, is a more private figure

Mary MacLeod married Fred Trump just six years after moving to New York, according to the BBC. The two lived in a wealthy area of Queens, where homemaker Mary was active in local charities and focused on raising their five children. The Scottish native became a U.S. citizen in 1942 and passed away in 2000 at the age of 88, just slightly more than a year after Fred died.

Although Donald spoke frequently of his father, he must be prodded to discuss his mother. As Vanity Fair notes, journalist Tim O'Brien, who wrote the biography Trump Nation, advises, "Fred looms over his emotions and psyche in a very distinct way." Mary, meanwhile, is typically discussed only in, "classic homemaker, sexist terms. He never spoke of her as having an external life in society outside of the house." Per Politico, friends described Mary as conservative, proper, pleasant, and friendly. Reportedly, she was a dedicated mother, wife, and citizen.