Michelle Obama’s Mother Has Died

Marian Shields Robinson, the mother of former First Lady Michelle Obama and a beloved in the Obama family, has passed away at the age of 86. news of her passing was shared by Michelle Obama and other family members, who expressed their deep sorrow and gratitude for her life.

Robinson, a widow and lifelong resident of Chicago moved to the White House in 2009 to help care for her granddaughters, Malia and Sasha, when her son-in-law, Barack Obama, was elected president. Despite initial reluctance to leave her hometown, she was persuaded by her daughter and son, Craig Robinson, to make the move to Washington.

In her son’s memoir, “A Game of Character,” Robinson shared her initial hesitation about moving to the White House, but acknowledged the importance of providing a sense of normalcy for her granddaughters. She eventually agreed to the move, at least temporarily, and became a significant presence in the lives of Malia and Sasha, who were 10 and 7 years old respectively when they moved to the White House in 2009.

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Robinson had retired from her job as a bank secretary to help care for her granddaughters. In the White House, she continued to provide a comforting presence for the girls, often accompanying them to and from school daily without the need for Secret Service protection.

In her 2018 memoir, “Becoming,” Michelle Obama paid tribute to her mother’s influence, describing her as a “steady hand” and a source of “unconditional love.” Robinson’s love for her granddaughters and her selfless dedication to their needs provided Michelle Obama with the confidence to navigate her role as First Lady.

Despite her proximity to the seat of power, Robinson maintained a low profile, rarely giving media interviews and enjoying a level of anonymity that allowed her to live a relatively normal life. She was often seen on shopping trips, attending events at the Kennedy Center, and visiting her other grandchildren in Portland, Oregon.

Moving to the White House also opened up new experiences for Robinson, who had never traveled outside the U.S. before moving to Washington. Her first overseas trip was aboard Air Force One in 2009 when the Obamas visited France. She also joined the family on trips to Russia, Italy, and Ghana, and accompanied her daughter and granddaughters on trips to South Africa, Botswana, and China.

Born in Chicago on July 30, 1937, Robinson was one of seven children. She attended two years of teaching college, married in 1960, and emphasized the importance of education to her children. Both Michelle and Craig Robinson were educated at Ivy League schools, with Michelle also earning a law degree from Harvard. Robinson’s husband, Fraser Robinson, was a pump operator for the Chicago Water Department and passed away in 1991.