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Homecoming: DeSantis family visits Florida first lady's elementary school, favorite burger joint in Ohio

EXCLUSIVE: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and his family visited first lady Casey DeSantis’ hometown in Troy, Ohio, this week, touring her elementary school and paying a visit to a favorite local diner for hamburgers and milkshakes between political events in the Buckeye State.

The governor and first lady, along with their children Madison and Mason, took a trip down memory lane Thursday between speaking events for the Republican governor in Akron and West Chester Township.

According to DeSantis’ office, the family visited K’s Hamburger Shop, a favorite local eatery of Casey DeSantis growing up, and met with employees and diners. They also looked through the first lady’s yearbook over burgers and milkshakes.

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Gov. Ron DeSantis, first lady Casey DeSantis and their children visit Heywood Elementary School April 13, 2023.

Gov. Ron DeSantis, first lady Casey DeSantis and their children visit Heywood Elementary School April 13, 2023. (Office of Gov. Ron DeSantis)

Later, they toured Heywood Elementary School, meeting teachers and staff before finding Casey DeSantis’ class picture from her days as a student and the classroom where her mother taught as a speech pathologist.

Ron and Casey spoke to a crowd of 900 at a dinner hosted by the Butler County Republican Party. The governor also spoke to a crowd at the Summit County GOP’s Lincoln Day Breakfast in Akron, Ohio.

DeSantis, a former congressman, saw his popularity soar among conservatives across the country over the past three years due to his forceful pushback against COVID-19 pandemic restrictions and fighting against the media, corporations and teachers unions while improving the state’s economy. He won re-election by a comfortable 19 points last year.

Gov. Ron DeSantis, first lady Casey DeSantis and their children walk through Troy, Ohio, April 13, 2023.

Gov. Ron DeSantis, first lady Casey DeSantis and their children walk through Troy, Ohio, April 13, 2023. (Office of Gov. Ron DeSantis)

DeSantis is widely considered an eventual candidate for president in 2024 and has already been the target of attacks from former President Trump, the polling front-runner for the GOP nomination next year.

After visiting Ohio Thursday, DeSantis gave speeches Friday in Lynchburg, Virginia, and Manchester, New Hampshire. The governor didn’t mention his anticipated presidential campaign in his speech in New Hampshire, other than to repeat his frequently used line that “I have only begun to fight.”

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Gov. Ron DeSantis, first lady Casey DeSantis and their children visit a diner in Troy, Ohio, April 13, 2023.

Gov. Ron DeSantis, first lady Casey DeSantis and their children visit a diner in Troy, Ohio, April 13, 2023. (Office of Gov. Ron DeSantis)

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“We’re leading the nation on a whole host of issues. We’re No. 1 in the country … for net-in migration. … We’re No. 1 in new business formations, No. 1 in tourism. We’re No. 1 in economic freedom. … We’re No. 1 in education freedom. We’re No. 1 in parental involvement in education,” DeSantis touted. “We lead not merely with words but with deeds.”

Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

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