U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Jose Medina, 29, of Puerto Rico danced with first lady Melania Trump Friday night during the Salute to the Armed Services Ball in Washington, D.C.
The event was hosted at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. and it was one of three official inaugural balls held that night.
On the arrival of President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump to the ball, the president told the assembled crowd, “I want to thank you on behalf of Melania, myself, the family and the millions of people all over the world.”
“The job you’ve done is absolutely incredible, absolutely incredible.”
Medina, the lucky soldier selected to dance with the first lady, hails from Ponce, Puerto Rico. According to the Department of Defense, he is a human resource specialist who is assigned to the Headquarters Company, 4th Battalion of the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment.
Medina, who served with an outfit in both Iraq and Afghanistan, said it was an “honor” to be selected to dance with the first lady.
“It’s incredible. Obviously, it was a great privilege and honor to get the chance to dance with the first lady,” he told Inside Edition in a televised interview after the ball.
During their dance, the two were seen amicably chatting during the dance, “She [was] just saying hi to me, congratulating me on being selected, and I just told her that she was beautiful and that she had a beautiful family, and she smiled at that,” he recalled. “She was just trying to get to know me. Behind the scenes she wanted to talk to me more.”
While the two slow danced, Medina asked the first lady if he could twirl her, to which she replied with a smiling “of course.”
“So I did it and then the crowd went crazy,” Medina said with a broad smile in the interview.
He also shared that the first lady seemed slightly nervous when they first hit the dance floor but became more comfortable after time.
For the event, Melania donned an off-the-shoulder vanilla gown that she had designed with the help of designer Herve Pierre. Pierre has also worked with renowned designer Carolina Herrera and during their time together, they created clothing for several first ladies including Hillary Clinton, Laura Bush, and Michelle Obama.
As Western Journalism has previously reported, there has been controversy on dressing the new first lady, with designer Sophie Theallet saying she had “not interest” in doing it, while Tommy Hilfiger said he would be “proud” to dress her.
Melania also used the opportunity to deliver her first public remarks since the inauguration.
She told soldiers at Bagram Airbase in Afghanistan via a satellite video link that “We will fight. We will win. And we will make America great again.”