December 31, 2008, Anchorage, Alaska – Governor Sarah Palin has welcomed her first grandchild, Tripp Easton Mitchell Johnston, born to Bristol Palin and Levi Johnston on December 27.
“We are over the moon with the arrival of this healthy, beautiful baby,” Governor Palin said. “The road ahead for this young couple will not be easy, but nothing worthwhile is ever easy. Bristol and Levi are committed to accomplish what millions of other young parents have accomplished, to provide a loving and secure environment for their child. They are both hard workers, they’re very strong, and have faith they’ve made the right decision in setting aside their own interests to make this child their highest priority.”
Palin added, “When Bristol and Levi first told us the shocking news that she was pregnant, to be honest, we all at first looked at the situation with some fear and a bit of despair. Isn’t it just like God to turn those circumstances into such an amazing, joyful blessing when you ask Him to help you through?”
Bristol Palin said she “obviously discourages” teen pregnancy and knows that plans she previously made for herself will now forever be changed. “Teenagers need to prevent pregnancy to begin with – this isn’t ideal. But I’m fortunate to have a supportive family which is dealing with this together. Tripp is so perfectly precious; we love him with all our hearts. I can’t imagine life without him now.”
Bristol begins her final semester of high school next week where she’ll get her last credit needed to graduate. She looks forward to continuing her record of good grades and high achievement. Levi is continuing his online high school work in addition to working as an electrical apprentice on the North Slope.
Bill McAllister, the governor’s office communications director, adds: "The governor's office previously declined to comment to honor the family's wishes that the event remain as private as possible. However, the high volume of press inquiries, along with some erroneous information that was published, prompted the governor to make a statement.