An unnamed White House source confirms that First Lady Michelle Obama will attend the funeral of Hadiya Pendleton in place of her husband, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Mrs. Obama will attend Saturday’s funeral in Chicago for the 15-year-old shooting victim, who was slain by an unknown gunman a few days after she danced for Obama during his 2nd Inauguration in January.
Pendleton was shot once in the back as she huddled with a group of friends in a park to wait out the rain. The King College Prep honor student was slain about two blocks from the Obamas’ Chicago residence in upscale Kenwood.
The Obamas’ daughters, Malia and Sasha, are not expected to attend the funeral with their mother, according to the Tribune.
An unnamed White House official told the Tribune that senior adviser Valerie Jarrett and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan will also attend the funeral. Both are native Chicagoans.
The president reached out to the family last week to offer his condolences, according to the Tribune, citing people close to the family.
“It’s a nice gesture and we appreciate it,” said Hadiya’s cousin, Shatira Wilks, who acts as the family spokesperson.
We would love to hear why Mr. Obama can’t make it to Hadiya’s funeral. But that information is probably classified.
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