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Trump Didn’t Exploit Carryn Owens, He Honored Her Fallen Husband

carryn owens

Members of the media said Trump exploited Carryn Owens’ tragedy during his congressional address. Federalist senior writer Mary Katharine Ham disagrees.


During his congressional address Tuesday evening, President Trump honored Chief Petty Officer William Owens, a Navy SEAL who was killed in Yemen during a raid last month.

“We are blessed to be joined by Carryn Owens, widow of U.S. Navy Special Operator, Senior Chief William ‘Ryan’ Owens,” Trump said, while looking in the direction of Carryn Owens, who sat next to Ivanka Trump in the first lady’s box. “Ryan died as he lived,” he said. “A warrior and a hero, battling against terrorism and securing our nation.”

“Ryan’s legacy is etched into eternity,” Trump said.

The chamber erupted into a prolonged applause that lasted for several minutes, during which Carryn stood and mouthed “I love you” repeatedly while looking upward.

“Ryan is looking down right now, you know that, and he’s very happy because I think he just broke our record,” Trump said of the long applause.

In response, members of the media suggested the president was exploiting the family’s tragedy for political gain. Federalist senior writer Mary Katharine Ham disagrees.

Ham appeared on “CNN Newsroom” Wednesday afternoon to elaborate on her thoughts. “I didn’t like the idea that she is only fit to be a prop, that she can only be exploited by the President,” she said. “There are some moments that go beyond that, even when they are political moments.”