Maryanne Trump Barry, the oldest sister of Donald Trump and former federal judge, passed away at the age of 86 in her Upper East Side home on November 13, as reported by the New York Times. At the time of this writing, there has been no official statement from Donald Trump or the Trump family regarding Barry’s death.
Barry, a federal appellate judge in Philadelphia appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1999, stepped back from her duties in early 2017 following Donald’s election. She formally retired in 2019, concluding a civil misconduct case related to inheritance tax issues on property transferred by their father, Fred Trump.
Reports indicate that Barry was under hospice care for cancer at the time of her passing.
Born in Queens, New York, Maryanne Trump Barry earned her undergraduate degree from Mount Holyoke College in 1958, becoming the first in her family to achieve a college degree. She obtained her master’s degree from Columbia University in 1962 and a Juris Doctor degree from Hofstra University School of Law in 1974.
Barry served as an assistant U.S. attorney for the District of New Jersey for nearly a decade, making her mark as one of the only two women in the office initially. Appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1983 to the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, she earned a subsequent promotion by President Bill Clinton in 1999.
Known for her toughness and respect on the bench, Barry maintained a low public profile despite her brother’s high-profile presidential campaigns. Donald Trump, however, acknowledged seeking advice from his big sister, who advised him to “just be yourself” during his 2016 debate appearance.
While Barry’s 1980 divorce from David Desmond was discreet, her later comments on women and sexual harassment in 1992 drew attention. She remarked on the revisiting of past interactions as sexual harassment, describing many accusations as “frivolous.”
During Donald Trump’s presidency, Mary Trump secretly recorded a conversation with Barry, revealing her critical views on her brother, stating that he “has no principles.” Maryanne Trump Barry’s passing marks the third sibling death for Donald, following the deaths of Fred Trump Jr. in 1981 and Robert Trump in August 2020.