It’s been 19 days since Myeshia Johnson, the pregnant widow of Sgt. La David Johnson, was thrown into the middle of a national controversy after President Donald Trump paid her a condolence call. On Monday, just two days after Sgt. Johnson’s burial, she appeared on Good Morning America to give her side of the story and had “nothing to say” to Trump, and the president soon responded.
“I asked Master Sgt. Neil to put his phone on speaker so my aunt and uncle could hear as well,” Johnson told George Stephanopoulos. “The president said that he knew what he signed up for, but it hurts anyways. It made me cry because I was very angry at the tone of his voice and how he said it. He couldn’t remember my husband’s name… I heard him stumbling on trying to remember my husband’s name, and that’s what hurt me the most.”
“I didn’t say anything. I just listened,” Johnson said after being asked if she had talked with Trump during his call, which made her “very upset and hurt; it made me cry even worse.”
Moments after Johnson’s appearance on GMA, the president responded via Twitter insisting he knew the fallen soldier’s name.
“I had a very respectful conversation with the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson, and spoke his name from the beginning, without hesitation!” he wrote.
The controversy started when Rep. Frederica S. Wilson (D-Fla.) made public the president’s remarks during the condolence call. Trump was quick to refute the representative’s remarks saying that her story was “totally fabricated.” Johnson, during her interview made it clear that Wilson’s story was indeed “100 percent correct” adding that Sgt. Neil, her aunt, her uncle and the driver were all in the car when the phone call took place.
This marks Johnson’s first public appearance and comments since receiving the call from the president last week. Johnson’s husband was one of four U.S. soldiers killed on Oct. 4 after being attacked by Niger Islamic State Militants.
During her interview, Johnson also made it clear that she hasn’t been allowed to see her husband’s remains. She told Stephanopoulos that she needs answers regarding Sgt. Johnson’s death. “They won’t show me a finger, a hand. I know my husband’s body from head to toe and they won’t let me see anything.”
Johnson ended the emotional conversation by saying that once her daughter is born in January, she’ll tell her “how awesome her dad was and what a great father he was.”