Former White House butler Wilson Roosevelt Jerman who served 11 US Presidents has succumbed to the deadly Coronavirus at the age of 91. Jerman, who was one of the White House's longest-serving employees, had served the US Presidents from Dwight D. Eisenhower to Barack Obama.
Bill and I were saddened to hear of the passing of Wilson Roosevelt Jerman at the age of 91 from COVID-19. Jerman served as a White House butler across 11 presidencies and made generations of first families feel at home, including ours. Our warmest condolences to his loved ones.— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) May 21, 2020
Jerman got his first job in the White House in 1957 when he started as a cleaner. He was promoted to butler while President John F. Kennedy (1917 – 1963) was in office. President Kennedy's wife and then First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis promoted him.
He went on to serve as a butler for nine more presidents, forming particularly close relationships with President George H.W. Bush (1924 – 2018) and his family, which continued when President George W. Bush followed in his father’s footsteps.
After working full-time in the White House since 1957, Jerman moved to part-time status in 2003, continuing there until his retirement in 2012. First Lady Michelle Obama included a photo of Jerman in her 2018 memoir, “Becoming.”
Upon his retirement in 2012, former President Barack Obama honoured him with a series of plaques, one that represented each of the presidents he had served.