News and Commentary

Meet The Lady Donald Trump Tried To Push Off Her Land

Vera Coking, 87, the resolute and feisty elderly Atlantic city resident who refused to allow Donald Trump to buy her home so he could build a limousine waiting area and parking lot for his Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, once called Trump “a maggot, a cockroach and a crumb.” Coking’s comments came in the midst of her battle with Trump in 1998, as she was interviewed by The New York Daily News. Coking, almost 70 at the time while Trump was just past 50, added, “If Trump’s thinking I’m gonna die tomorrow, he’s having himself a pipe dream. I’m gonna be here for a long, long time. I’ll stay just to see he’s not getting my house. We’ll be going to his funeral, you can count on that.”

In 2014, Trump said that he offered Coking millions of dollars for her three-story clapboard home, blustering, “She could have lived happily ever after in Palm Beach, Florida; instead, she was an impossible person to deal with.”

But a previous statement from Coking’s grandson, Ed Casey, contradicted Trump’s claim, as he said the claim of an offer worth millions simply wasn’t true. Instead, he said, his grandmother just wanted to stay in her home. He told The Press of Atlantic City in 2013, “That was a great victory for her. They wanted to take her house for pennies and throw her out on the street. My grandmother wasn’t looking for publicity and she wasn’t opposed to selling. There were lots of rumors that she was offered millions of dollars. None of them were true. There was never a serious offer made.”

“If Trump’s thinking I’m gonna die tomorrow, he’s having himself a pipe dream.”

Vera Coking, fighting Donald Trump’s attempt to buy her home using eminent domain

The eminent domain claim Trump tried to use failed in 1998; lawyers for Coking, Clare and Vincent Sabatini, who were restaurateurs, and Josef Banin, an owner of a jewelry store, said Trump was attempting to avoid paying market value for the land.