Willie Julian Usery Jr. was born on December 21, 1923, in Hardwick, Georgia, and died on December 10, 2016.
He was a labor union activist and U.S. government political appointee.
He served as United States Secretary of Labor in the Ford administration.
Even though Willie was his birth name, official sources often mistakenly called him “William.” For a period of his life, Usery was known as “W.J.,” although most associates called him “Bill.”
His parents were Willie J. Usery, Sr. and Effie Mae Williamson (later Phillips).
William attended Georgia Military College from 1938 to 1941.
From 1941 to 1942, William worked as an underwater welder for the J. A. Jones Construction Company in Brunswick, Georgia building Liberty ships.
He married Gussie Mae Smith in 1942.
Willie Julian Usery Jr. passed away at 92 years old.