After 46 years, popular Bern's server retires

- Jamal Hussamy has spent his life serving others. Now, he is leaving behind 46 years of memories after working at Bern's Steakhouse.

"I started pouring soup in the kitchen, and after a week, Bern called me into his office and he told me, 'I want you to be a server,'" Hussamy recalled.

That was in 1972. He has been waiting tables at Bern's ever since.

"It was fun through the years and it was great, couldn't ask for any better than that," he said.

Hussamy's special touch led to a large clientele of judges, lawyers, and doctors.

"I cared. I treat the customers like they were the only customers I had. I always give them patience and whatever needs, they were all met," he said.

Hussamy came to America from Beirut in 1970 for college, to become a doctor. He took a job at Bern's while waiting to be accepted into school and has never looked back.

"Even if I get a degree, I don't I would have had the opportunity to grow up and meet all kinds of people like here," he said.

"He's one of the most requested servers that we have ever had," said David Laxer, who was a child when he first met Jamal. He is now the owner and president of Bern's. "Jamal knew me since I was younger than 10. So you sort of grow up with someone. It's really more part of the family. So, you are losing someone who is part of the family at that point."

A family that is hard for Jamal to leave.

"It is sad to leave this place. I love to stay but I got to enjoy the rest of my life," he added.

Jamal is 70 and plans to stay in the Tampa area and enjoy his family.

Up Next:


Up Next

  • After 46 years, popular Bern's server retires
  • Students bridge gaps through theater
  • Tampa woman wins national award for spreading joy
  • Hillsborough Community College gives personal touch to higher education
  • Meet Tampa's Hispanic Heritage Woman of the Year
  • Equine therapy helps veterans re-acclimate to everyday life
  • School program teaches valuable lessons in kindness
  • Gasparilla Music Foundation brings music to students who need it most
  • Hispanic Heritage Month: Tampa Hispanic Heritage honors 35 years of service
  • Tampa church takes sermons to the street this Sunday