“It is with heavy heart I share that my wonderful brother, Robert, peacefully passed away tonight,” he said in a statement. “He was not just my brother, he was my best friend. 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.”
The president visited his brother at a New York City hospital on Friday. Trump confirmed that his brother was ill but did not disclose the reason why.
Robert Trump’s cause of death was also not revealed.
Before visiting the hospital on Friday, Trump said, “I have a wonderful brother.”
“We have a great relationship for a long time, from day one, so long time ago,” he added to reporters.
Before, reports said he was admitted to the intensive care unit of Mount Sinai Hospital in New York in June.
Robert Trump had previously retired to upstate New York where he was a noted philanthropist, serving as a trustee for the Angels of Light, a non-profit organization that provides holiday gifts to children with life-threatening illnesses.
Earlier this year, Robert Trump filed a lawsuit against niece Mary Trump, who was set to publish a book about the Trump family. He argued via lawyers that she violated a nondisclosure agreement from about 20 years ago.
“I and the rest of my entire family are so proud of my wonderful brother, the president, and feel that Mary’s actions are truly a disgrace,” Robert Trump told news outlets earlier this year.
Mary Trump’s memoir was eventually released last month after a judge agreed to lift a temporary restraining order.
The White House described her book as a work of fiction, denying some of the allegations contained within.
Before that, Robert Trump told the New York Post that he supported his brother’s campaign “1,000 percent” in 2016.
Fred Trump Jr., the president’s older brother and Mary Trump’s father, died in the early 1980s at the age of 43 after battling alcoholism for years. The early death had an impact on Trump, who said he never drinks because of it.
He has two sisters, Elizabeth Trump Grau, who is a retired executive from Chase Manhattan Bank, and Maryanne Trump Barry, who is a retired federal judge.