Donald Trump seemed to forget his manners when he let his wife fend for herself while he ran ahead of her to board Air Force One and avoid the horrific weather — and the first lady was quick to return the favor, furiously dodging his attempt to hold her hand when they landed hours later.
Melania Trump, 47, and her husband, 71, departed from Dulles International Airport on Friday morning ahead of Reverend Billy Graham’s funeral in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The pair were met with strong winds when they exited their vehicle to board the plane, with gusts scheduled to go beyond 30 miles per hour in the Washington, D.C. area over the course of the day.
But amid flying newspapers and challenging weather conditions, Donald rushed up the presidential aircraft’s stairs without so much as a look for his wife.
He jogged up to Air Force One with copies of the Washington Post and the Financial Times in his hand, boarding the plane first and promptly seeking shelter.
Melania, meanwhile, was left behind trying to shield her blowout from the wind by wrapping herself in her black coat and pulling it on top of her head.
She then climbed up the stairs in five-inch stilettos, trying to hold her outfit together to avoid a wardrobe malfunction.
Donald and Melania used the back entrance of the plane instead of the main door during their departure. The back door is located lower towards the ground, and presumably helped protect the couple from the windy conditions.
After landing in Charlotte, Donald repeatedly tried to grab Melania’s hand as they deboarded the plane together, but the first lady blatantly dodged his numerous attempts.
Instead, she kept holding down her outfit as both of them made their way down the stairs.
Donald had apparently managed to grab his wife’s hand before their exit, but right before they stepped out, Melania seemed to let go, placing her hand on her skirt instead.
The first lady did however put on a more amiable show upon the couple’s arrival at the funeral, however, holding onto her husband’s hand as they made their way into the ceremony alongside Vice President Mike Pence and his wife Karen.
But that didn’t stop President Trump from once again bounding ahead of his wife as they boarded Air Force One to fly to Florida from Charlotte, with the former businessman pictured walking up to the aircraft well before his wife, who once again followed along several feet behind him.
After flying to Florida, where they are expected to spend the weekend at the family’s Mar-a-Lago estate, Melania and Donald were much more affectionate, clasping hands as they disembarked from the plane side-by-side.
The pair have sought to put on a united front in recent days, after appearing distant following allegations of infidelity on the president’s part.
On Thursday, Donald warmly greeted Melania as he made a surprise appearance at a White House summit on the opioid crisis.
‘Melania is here some place. Where is our first lady? Where is she? Where’s Melania?’ the president said in reference to his wife, who had delivered opening remarks during the gathering.
When he spotted her at the back of the room, Donald said: ‘Hello, darling.’
Earlier this week, Donald and Melania held hands publicly during a tribute to Reverend Graham under the rotunda of the Capitol.
This came after Melania flashed a bright smile next to her husband as both of them welcomed the Australian Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull and his wife, Lucy Turnbull, to the White House.
Melania appeared to distance herself from her husband earlier in the year, when allegations that he had an affair with the porn star Stormy Daniels after the birth of their son Barron, now 11, first emerged.
Last month, Melania skipped the South Lawn when she and her husband left Washington, D.C. to travel to Florida in the wake of the Parkland shooting.
Instead, she met him directly on Air Force One, when usually the president and his wife would have been photographed leaving the White House together to board the aircraft.
When Donald and Melania deplaned, the president appeared to try to grab his wife’s hand, but she ignored his attempt and he only managed to hold on to her thumb for a brief moment.
On that same day, a report by the New Yorker featured a Playboy playmate saying she had an affair with Donald in 2006, when Barron was a newborn.
The first lady has avoided holding her husband’s hand in public in the past. In May last year, a moment that saw her flick Donald’s hand away during a visit to Israel, while arriving at Ben Gurion International Airport, went viral.
She seemed to dodge another attempt the next day as she and Donald arrived in Rome, Italy.
This time, the president appeared to reach for his wife’s hand after waving at the crowd at the top of the Air Force One stairs, only for Melania to quickly remove her fingers, touching her hair instead.
Melania isn’t the only member of the Trump family who has had to fend for herself while boarding Air Force One recently.
Last month, Donald and Melania’s 11-year-old son Barron traveled to the airport in a car separate from his parents’ Secret Service vehicle, as the family prepared to board Air Force One to return home after a long weekend in Mar-a-Lago.
The only child of the president and his wife arrived at Palm Beach International Airport, in West Palm Beach, Florida, in a Secret Service vehicle separate to the one carrying his parents, who arrived on the tarmac just a few seconds before him.
After getting out of his own vehicle, Barron was then seen joining Donald and Melania as they prepared to board the plane for the short trip back to Washington, D.C.
Footage of the first family’s arrival at the air strip shows Trump’s SUV arriving as part of a multi-car motorcade, which includes a white vehicle that is carrying his son.
The cars then pull up alongside Air Force One, where Donald and Melania make their way out of the SUV alongside several Secret Service agents. Meanwhile, Barron can be seen emerging from his vehicle, which has stopped a few feet back.
He is then escorted out of the car by a Secret Service agent who walks him over to join his parents, who are already making their way up the stairs leading to the presidential aircraft by the he joins them.