In a phone interview with Fox News on Monday, President Donald Trump remembered his brother Robert as a "fantastic guy" and his "best friend."
Robert Trump died over the weekend at the age of 71. The president was able to visit his brother in New York before his passing.
"This was not a great weekend; it's very hard," Trump said. "You knew it was going to happen, but still — when it happens, it's a very tough thing."
"He was a great guy, he was a tremendous guy. He was my friend, I guess they say 'best friend,' and that's true," Trump added. "And losing him...not easy."
Trump said that throughout his life his relationship with his brother was free of jealousy despite growing up in a competitive environment.
"A lot of times in families, I hate to say it, but there's jealousy, especially among children and children who are competitive children, because he was very competitive," Trump told Fox News on Monday. "There was not an ounce of jealousy. He'd go around talking about how great this is for the country and it's so incredible. He was my biggest fan."
Trump added that his brother was "thrilled" at his work as president.
"People would tell me all the time, 'I spoke to your brother, and your brother was so thrilled and so thrilled at what was happening and what was happening for the country,'" Trump said. "He was so angry at China because of what happened when the plague came in and they shouldn't have allowed that to happen. They could have stopped it. He was so upset by that."
Later, in a gaggle with reporters prior to departing for Wisconsin, Trump said that he may hold a funeral service for his brother at the White House on Friday.
NEW: Pres. Trump says he hopes to have a small service for his brother at the White House Friday.
"That would be, I think, a great honor to him...He loved our country so much. He was so proud of what we were doing and what we are doing for our country." https://t.co/PkzcMENAkZ pic.twitter.com/UXsYZ5XTfi
— ABC News (@ABC) August 17, 2020
"We may do just a small service right here in the White House for my brother," Trump said. "We're looking at doing that. It would be a great honor to him. I think he would be greatly honored. He loves our country. He loved our country so much. He was so proud of what we were doing and what we are doing for our country. So, I think it would be appropriate."
Robert Trump is the youngest of the President's four siblings. Trump's older brother, Fred Jr., died in 1981 at the age of 43. The President has two older siblings, Maryanne — a retired federal judge — and Elizabeth.