Ivana Trump, Donald Trump’s first wife, died of “blunt impact injuries” to the torso, the New York City medical examiner’s office has said.
It added that the death of the 73-year-old on Thursday was accidental.
Reports in US media say she died after falling down stairs in her New York City apartment.
Ivana Trump, who was born in what was then Czechoslovakia, married the former president in 1977. They divorced 15 years later in 1992.
“She was a wonderful, beautiful, and amazing woman, who led a great and inspirational life,” Mr Trump said.
They had three children together – Donald Jr, Ivanka and Eric Trump.
Donald and Ivana Trump were notable public figures in New York in the 1980s and 1990s, and their split was the subject of intense public interest.
After their separation, Trump went on to launch her own lines of beauty products, clothing and jewellery.
She took credit for bringing up their children in her 2017 memoir Raising Trump, saying she “made the decisions about their education, activities, travel, child care, and allowances” until college.
In the book, she added that her relationship with Mr Trump had improved since their divorce, and said she spoke to him about once a week.
The Trump family lauded her in a statement as “a force in business, a world-class athlete, a radiant beauty, and caring mother and friend”.
“Ivana Trump was a survivor. She fled from communism and embraced this country,” the statement added. “She taught her children about grit and toughness, compassion and determination.”
Ivanka Trump, who was said to be very close to her mother, said in an Instagram post she was “heartbroken”.
“Mom was brilliant, charming, passionate and wickedly funny. She modelled strength, tenacity and determination in her every action. She lived life to the fullest – never forgoing an opportunity to laugh and dance,” she wrote.
Donald Trump was Ivana’s second husband. Her first, Alfred Winklmayr, was an Austrian ski instructor and friend who she reportedly married in order to obtain Austrian citizenship.
That marriage allowed her to leave Czechoslovakia, her communist home country, without defecting.
In December 2010 Trump’s ex-wife Ivana and her daughter Ivanka visited Georgia. The Georgian President’s Office said Ivana Trump was planning to invest in Georgia, namely, to set up a multifunctional entertainment center in Batumi.
Marriage to Donald Trump
In 1976, she met Donald Trump while on a work trip to New York. The couple married in 1977, according to the biography.
Her first son, Donald Trump Jr., was born the same year, followed by daughter Ivanka in 1981 and son Eric in 1984.
Ivana and Donald were frequently tabloid fodder and actively cultivated an aura of celebrity around their marriage.
Ivana Trump worked as the vice president of interior design for the Trump Organization. Her design work included Trump Tower, and she also served as the chief executive officer of some Trump hotel properties.
The couple’s crumbling marriage was splashed across tabloid covers and they ultimately divorced in 1992.
Ivana Trump accused her husband of ripping out her hair of raping her during their marriage, an incident described in the 1993 book Lost Tycoon: The Many Lives of Donald Trump, before she walked back the allegation in a statement given just prior to the book’s printing.
“[O]n one occasion during 1989, Mr. Trump and I had marital relations in which he behaved very differently toward me than he had during our marriage,” she said. “As a woman, I felt violated, as the love and tenderness, which he normally exhibited towards me, was absent. I referred to this as a ‘rape,’ but I do not want my words to be interpreted in a literal or criminal sense.”
Donald Trump described the claim as “obviously false.”
After the divorce, she remained in the limelight, capitalizing on her fame by appearing in advertisements for national brands and launching a cosmetics company, Ivana Haute Couture.
She stirred up controversy after Trump’s election to the White House, referring to herself as the “first lady” in an interview with ABC News.
“I have the direct number to White House, but I don’t want to call him there because Melania is there and I don’t want to cause any kind of jealousy because I am basically first Trump wife,” she said. “I am first lady. ”
Ivana Trump is survived by her three adult children, Donald, Ivanka and Eric, as well as several grandchildren.
Danielle Kurtzleben and Tamara Keith contributed to this story.
Source: BBC, Finchannel.com, NPR