The incredible life of Trump’s 27-year-old ‘bag man’ — who became famous from a viral trick-shot football video and is now under investigation for financial crimes

John McEntee.

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John McEntee.
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Leah Millis/Reuters

While the news cycle was understandably focused on Rex Tillerson’s departure as secretary of state, he wasn’t the only person who left President Donald Trump’s orbit on Tuesday.

The other was a 27-year-old White House aide named John McEntee, who was escorted out of the president’s residence amid a financial-crimes investigation.

McEntee served as Trump’s longtime personal assistant. After his departure, Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign quickly rehired him as the senior adviser for campaign operations.

Here’s a young, viral football star ended up next to one of the most powerful men in the world:


Born on March 9, 1990, John D. McEntee II grew up in Anaheim, California, which is where his football talents first became apparent. He was a star athlete at Servite High School, where he threw 1,525 yards as a senior.

Source: Max Preps


His father is a successful producer, manager, and agent who books stars from Snoop Dogg to Bette Midler for Vegas casinos and Fortune 500 companies. The family’s palatial home reportedly has a painting of McEntee in the billiard room throwing a pass.

Sources: TEI Entertainment, The Orange County Register


McEntee went on to become a starting quarterback at the University of Connecticut, where he continued to make waves. In 2011, he won the Joseph M. Giannelli Unsung Hero Award for his playing.

Sources: People, The Daily Campus, UConn


That same year, McEntee starred in a video titled “Johnny Mac Trick Shot Quarterback” of him making impressive football shots. The video went viral and was featured on CNN.

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McEntee in college
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Screenshot via HardcoreHuskies/YouTube

Sources: CNN, YouTube


Shortly after graduating from UConn in 2012, McEntee went on to become a production assistant at Fox News, where he focused on the network’s social media accounts.

Sources: People


Soon enough, he started volunteering on Trump’s campaign. He snagged a full-time job as Trump’s trip director in August 2015.

Sources: People


“I bought into the message,” he said at the time. “I was sick of the career politicians.”

Sources: People


After the election, Trump awarded McEntee with a job as his personal aide in the White House.

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McEntee poses with Trump and his closest aides from the campaign after Trump won.
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Donald J. Trump/Twitter

Source: Politico


The position is sometimes called “bag man” because McEntee was responsible for the president’s belongings.


He made a salary of $115,000. The top salary for White House staffers is $179,700.

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McEntee and White House policy adviser Stephen Miller stand on the tarmac after arriving with Trump aboard Air Force One in New York on May 4, 2017.
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REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Source: White House


McEntee was reportedly well liked in the West Wing, and amid a constantly shifting staff, he was able to hold onto his position close to the president.

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McEntee returns to Washington with then-White House senior adviser Steve Bannon aboard Air Force One on March 5, 2017.
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REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

McEntee is reportedly very close to the president, and is often the first staffer to see him in the morning and the last to see him at night. He apparently is one of few staffers who could get their calls answered on the first ring.

Source: Politico


McEntee was known as a reliable staffer despite his low profile outside the White House. “Johnny got it,” former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski said about McEntee. “Whatever we needed, it didn’t matter: He was on it.”

Source: Politico


McEntee reportedly liked to play a boyish trick aboard Air Force One. He would sometimes write notes to other staffers with Trump’s signature, which he perfected, only to reveal that he wrote them all along.

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McEntee (L) deplanes with White House senior adviser Jared Kushner as they return with Trump from a weekend at his New Jersey golf estate home via Air Force One on May 7, 2017.
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REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Source: Politico


But McEntee’s luck quickly ran out. On Tuesday, he was escorted out of the White House after being fired for “serious financial crimes.”

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McEntee (L)
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Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Source: Business Insider


Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign quickly rehired him as the senior adviser for campaign operations.

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McEntee directs Trump as he participates in the US-ASEAN Summit in Manila, Philippines on November 13, 2017.
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REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Source: CNN


Looks like the young McEntee will get another chance.

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McEntee stands by as Trump greets supporters after arriving aboard Air Force One in Lewisburg, West Virginia on February 1, 2018.
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REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst