6 things to know about Melania Trump

Melania Trump, Donald Trump's third wife, has been put in the spotlight during the 2016 campaign more they she may have liked.

She has been described as quiet and reserved, but her marriage to the Republican presidential nominee has forced her to make public statements and be scrutinized by the media.

Here are six things to know about the wife of the the GOP presidential nominee.

Melania was born in 1970 Novo Mesto, which was then Yugoslavia (it is now part of Slovenia). Her birth name was Melanija Knavs, which was changed to Melania Knauss when she came to America. If she becomes first lady, she would be the first born outside the United States since Louisa Adams, who was born in London.

She has an older sister, Ines Knauss. She also has a half-brother, who she has never met, according to a GQ profile.

Melania's father was a member of the Communist Party, according to the biography "Melania Trump: The Inside Story, from a Slovenian Communist Village to the White House."

(Credit: Getty Images / Kena Betancur)

Melania began her modeling career at age 16, but she said her goal at the time was to become a designer. She attended the University in Ljubljana to obtain a degree in design, but she only stayed for one year. She decided to continue her modeling career and moved to Milan. She worked primarily in Milan and Paris, and then moved to New York in 1996.

At the Republican National Convention in July, the program said Melania had earned a degree from the university, but media quickly called out the error.

(Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Robyn Beck)

Melania and Donald met in 1998 at party in Manhattan hosted by Paolo Zampolli, an Italian businessman. Despite having a date, Donald approached Melania and asked for her number. Melania refused to give it to him, but took his instead. A week later, she called him and they began dating soon after.

The two married in 2005 in Mar-a-Lago, Donald's Palm Beach, Florida, resort. Their son, Barron, was born a year later on March 20, 2016.

(Credit: Getty Images / Carlo Allegri)



To debunk reports that she may have immigrated to the United States illegally, Melania released a letter from her attorney that explains the steps she took to immigrate legally. When she first came to American in 1996, she had a visitor visa, her attorney said. Shortly after, she received a H-1B visa, which authorized her to be a model in the United States. She was issued five of these visas between 1996 and 2001, the letter said.

Her attorney said Melania earned a green card in 2000, and was admitted as a permanent resident in 2001. She then became eligible for citizenship in 2006.

(Credit: Getty Images / Peter Kramer)

Parts of Melanie's speech at the Republican National Convention were criticized for being very similar to First Lady Michelle Obama's speech at the Democratic National Convention in 2008.

Initially, Trump's campaign denied that the speeches were similar, but later, a Trump Organization staff writer took the blame for the similarities.

(Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Alex Wong, Paul J. Richards)

After the release of a 2005 audio of Donald speaking about groping and kissing women without their consent, his wife, Melania, said the words were "unacceptable and offensive," but she accepted his apology. She later said in an interview with CNN that her husband was "egged on" by Billy Bush, at the time a host of "Access Hollywood."

She also defended her husband after the accusations from several woman that he had kissed and fondled them without consent, saying the allegations were "organized from the opposition."

"Did they ever check the background of these women? They don't have any facts," she said.

(Credit: Getty Images / Joshua Lott)


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