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The widow of one of President Trump’s friends is dismissing an “unfair” allegation being made about her late husband in an explosive book by Trump’s niece.
Former tennis star Pam Shriver weighed in on the claim made by Mary Trump in her upcoming book that her late husband, Joe Shapiro, was paid by his friend Donald Trump to take his SAT exam for him. Shriver addressed the claim in a video statement she posted on Twitter, asserting that there was no way that Shapiro would have done such a thing.
“Obviously Joe’s not here to defend himself and to state what happened but I want to recollect what he told me about where he met Mr. Trump,” Shriver said in the video, calling her late husband “a man of great integrity” and “honesty.”
The president’s estranged niece made the claim about Shapiro in her book, “Too Much and Never Enough, How my Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man,” which is set to be released July 14. She alleged that Shapiro, who died in 1999 of cancer, was paid by Trump to take his SAT exam so that it could bolster his chances of transferring from Fordham University to the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
“To hedge his bets he enlisted Joe Shapiro, a smart kid with a reputation for being a good test taker, to take his SATs for him. That was much easier to pull off in the days before photo IDs and computerized records. Donald, who never lacked for funds, paid his buddy well,” Mary Trump wrote, notably not adding any proof or attribution for the claim.
Though Shapiro and Trump were friends, and remained so over the years, Shriver believes the two did not meet until Trump was already at the prestigious Wharton School.
“He was literally the smartest person I ever met,” she said in the video of her late husband who was an attorney and a former executive of the Walt Disney Company, according to ABC News. She explained that Shapiro and Trump met at the University of Pennsylvania where they were both members of the class of 1968.
“They shared a love of golf, they shared the same hometown of New York City, they shared the same campus,” she recalled, noting that she had just spoken to Shapiro’s close friends and sister about the claim which she also once refuted years ago when asked by a reporter.
Shapiro’s sister, Beth Shapiro, had asserted the same when she spoke to The Washington Post in a telephone interview, saying her brother met Trump for the first time when they were both attending the Philadelphia school.
“My brother never took a test for anybody else in his entire life,” she said.