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President Trump & Family Visit Pittsburgh To Pay Respects To Synagogue Shooting Victims

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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- President Donald Trump and members of his family were in Pittsburgh on Tuesday to pay their respects to the victims of Saturday's deadly synagogue shooting.

Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrived in Pittsburgh around 3:45 p.m. along with Trump's daughter, Ivanka, and her husband, Jared Kushner.

president trump melania trump tree of life synagogue
US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump, alongside Rabbi Jeffrey Myers, place stones and flowers on a memorial as they pay their respects at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, October 30, 2018. (Photo Credit: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

They were under heavy security. Police and bomb-sniffing dogs checked and re-checked the immediate neighborhoods for any suspicious packages.

The four first traveled to the Tree of Life Synagogue, where they met Rabbi Jeffrey Myers, of the Tree of Life/Or L'Simcha Congregation. They spent some time inside the synagogue before placing stones on each of the 11 Star of David memorials set up outside the synagogue.

The First Family then traveled to UPMC Presbyterian Hospital, where shooting victims are receiving treatment.

Heavy equipment was put in place near the hospital, including a dump truck parked on O'Hara Street, to prevent cars from driving onto DeSoto Street, near the hospital's emergency room entrance.

Dr. Don Yealy, UPMC Chief of Emergency Medicine, says four patients and their families gathered in one room to meet President Trump and the First Family. Some patients weren't well enough to enter that room, so Trump and the First Family visited them in their own individual hospital rooms.

According to Yealy, Trump spent a "considerable amount of time" with each individual patient and their family members.

KDKA's Ralph Iannotti Reports:

The president also spoke to the UPMC care team and visited a family member of someone who had died at the scene.

First responder representatives who helped during the shooting were also at the hospital for the visit.

"He expressed his thanks for their service and his sorrow over their injuries and really wanted to hear some of their stories about the event and what's been going on since then," Yealy said.

Yealy said Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner also met with individual patients and family members, asked about their experiences and expressed their thanks and their condolences.

"There really is no finer team than what we have here," Hospital CEO Dr. Steven Shapiro said. "We didn't want to get the recognition in this way... whoever came here, and arrived here, is alive and doing well."

The families also took photos with the president and his family.

After leaving the hospital, the First Family departed to return to the White House.


Local and national officials declined to appear with the president during his visit. Mayor Bill Peduto was among those officials, saying his sole focus would be on the funerals for the victims of the shooting and supporting their families. Peduto had said he hoped the president would choose to visit next week after the funerals.

Meanwhile, thousands of people gathered in Squirrel Hill for two different protests in opposition to Trump's visit.

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