Trump fires legendary inauguration announcer

Longtime inauguration announcer Charlie Brotman talks with CNN -- and says he thought he'd "commit suicide" after being dumped

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Chana Roberts,

Trump speaks at the Republican National Convention
Trump speaks at the Republican National Convention
Reuters

In an unprecedented move, President-elect Donald Trump has fired traditional inauguration announcer Charlie Brotman, replacing him with Steve Ray.

Ray is a Washington, DC.-based freelance announcer, and formerly volunteered with Trump's campaign.

Brotman, 88, has announced every inauguration parade since former President Dwight D. Eisenhower was sworn into office in 1957.

In an interview with CTV News Channel on Thursday, Brotman said, "Devastated is a word that covers it all. Yes, I was really disappointed, to say the least... I’m asking, ‘Did I do something? Am I too old? What’s going on?"

Brotman told CNN he "thought he was going to commit suicide."

Though he still doesn't know why he was fired, Brotman has received an outpouring of support. In addition, a Washington-based TV station asked him to share on inauguration day anecdotes, thoughts, and experiences from previous inauguration day parades.

"I’ve never received so many emails, so many voicemails," Brotman said, emphasizing the response was "overwhelming."

Brotman is the son of Russian-Jewish immigrants to the US, and was working as an announcer as the Washington Senators baseball team when Eisenhower offered heard him and offered him a job.

A Trump transition team spokesman said Brotman would be honored as “announcer chairman emeritus.”

Though Trump invited Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to attend January 20's inauguration ceremony, Netanyahu has announced he will not attend. However, Hillary and former President Bill Clinton are expected to attend the ceremony, despite the disagreements the two of them have with Trump.