The grieving widow of Sgt. La David Johnson said she has “nothing to say” to President Trump, following his ‘insincere’ condolence call.
It’s only been nineteen days since the death of her husband and two days since his wrenching burial and the condolence call she received from President Trump has pulled the grieving widow into the center of a national controversy.
“Very upset and hurt; it made me cry even worse,” Myeshia Johnson told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on Monday, regarding her conversation with President Trump.
Making her first public appearance on Good Morning America, Johnson recalled that the president said her husband “knew what he signed up for, but it hurts anyways. And it made me cry. I was very angry at the tone of his voice, and how he said it.”
She added: “I didn’t say anything. I just listened.”
Sgt. Johnson was killed in action in West Africa on Oct. 4, one of four U.S. soldiers who died in Niger when Islamic State militants attacked them.
The deadly operation is now under U.S. military investigation.
His body was returned to the United States on Oct. 7. It was sent home, to Florida, last week. Soon after, his name became entangled in a controversy after Trump was accused of making insensitive remarks to the 25-year-old soldier’s widow.
Rep. Frederica S. Wilson (D-Fla.) said Trump told Myeshia Johnson on the phone that her husband “must have known what he signed up for,” an account later corroborated by Johnson’s aunt and custodial mother, Cowanda Jones-Johnson.
Trump vehemently denied Wilson’s account, stating without evidence that he had proof it was “totally fabricated.” But White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly later appeared to confirm Wilson’s account. Myeshia Johnson said Monday that Wilson’s version of events was “100 percent correct.”
Johnson said several people — including her aunt and uncle, an Army official, and Wilson — heard the conversation because Trump was placed on speaker phone.
“Why would we fabricate something like that?” she said.
In her interview Monday with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, she said she’s not fully convinced her husband’s remains were inside the casket at his funeral.
“Why couldn’t I see my husband? Every time I asked to see my husband, they wouldn’t let me,” she said. “They won’t show me a finger, a hand. I know my husband’s body from head to toe. They won’t show me anything.
“I don’t know what’s in that box. It could be empty for all I know.”
As questions continue to swirl around the circumstances of La David Johnson’s death, Myeshia Johnson said she has some of her own “that I need answered.”
Chief among them, she said: “I want to know why it took them 48 hours to find my husband . . . When they came to my house, they just told me it was a massive gunfire and that my husband, as of Oct. 4, was missing. They didn’t know his whereabouts.”
Then, she said, “he went from missing to killed in action . . . I don’t know how he got killed, where he got killed or anything.”
To those who knew him, Johnson was a loving husband who had his wife’s name tattooed across his chest; a soldier who pushed to improve himself; a son who enjoyed talking about his family.
He was also a father who was looking forward to seeing his baby girl: Myeshia is six months pregnant. The couple also have a 2-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter.
The slain soldier’s daughter is expected to be born in January.
“I want to tell her how awesome her dad was and how a great father he was and how he died as a hero,” Myeshia Johnson said when asked what she’ll tell her daughter.
Photo Credit: TIME Inc; GMA/Twitter; Sgt. La David Johnson/ Business Insider
Video Credit: GMA
Reported by: Lacey Dash; Edited by: Amy Wesley