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Beloved White House butler William 'Buddy' Carter retires after 47 years

He served as a White House butler for 32 years after spending his first 15 years working at the Blair House guest residence.
Portrait of William A. Carter (Buddy), White House Assistant Maitre D', 4/5/2002
William "Buddy" Carter is pictured here on April 5, 2002. Carter retiring after serving as a White House butler for nearly 50 years.Tina Hager / White House via National Archives
/ Source: TODAY

A beloved White House butler who has served 10 presidential administrations during his career is retiring after 47 years.

William "Buddy" Carter is wrapping up nearly five decades of working at the Blair House and the White House at the end of this week, according to CNN.

Former first lady Michelle Obama thanked Carter for all his service by sharing a photo on Instagram Friday of her and former President Barack Obama with Carter from their eight-year stint in the White House.

"William 'Buddy' Carter is retiring after 47 years as a butler at the White House and the Blair House," she wrote in the photo caption. "Barack and I are so grateful to have had his warmth, charm, and dignity by our side for eight of those years. He was always someone we could count on, without fail, and as time went on, he became an extension of our own family. Congratulations, Buddy, on nearly a half-century of extraordinary service to First Families and our country."

The current occupants of the White House, President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden, also thanked Carter for his service.

"For 47 years, across 10 administrations, Buddy Carter was integral to the lives of US Presidents, their families, and their home, the White House," they said in a statement to CNN.

"We are enormously grateful to Buddy for his kindness, his service, and the times that we shared together — he performed a demanding job with excellence and joy for nearly half a century, always ready to lend a hand. Though it is difficult to imagine life in the White House without Buddy, we wish him all the best on a well-earned retirement, and many happy years ahead with Carol and their beloved children and grandchildren."

Carter was beloved by presidents from both sides of the aisle.

He was one of two guests brought by former first lady Melania Trump to the funeral of former first lady Barbara Bush in 2018, and he also attended the weddings of former first daughter Chelsea Clinton and TODAY's Jenna Bush Hager, a daughter of former President George W. Bush.

He began his career at the Blair House, which is the guest house across the street from the White House, before joining the White House staff 32 years ago under former President Ronald Reagan. He served seven presidents as one of the six butlers on the White House staff.