December 8, 2022

President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, and daughters Malia and Sasha pose for a family portrait with Bo and Sunny in the Rose Garden of the White House on Easter Sunday, April 5, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

When you think of Lolo Soetoro, what comes to mind? If you have heard about him before, then perhaps you know that he is the father of former U.S. President Barack Obama and his first stepfather. Beyond that, not much is known about this man who married the former president’s mother Ann when he was just a boy. But even though we don’t know much about him, Lolo Soetoro has a very interesting story – especially if you are a fan of the conspiracy theory. Here are some facts about Lolo Soetoro that might surprise you!

Birth NameLolo Soetoro
Birth Date2nd January 1935
Birth PlaceBandung, Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia)
Birth SignCapricorn
GenderMale
Other NamesN/A
Parent(s)Martodihardjo Soetoro
Sibling(s)9
Death Date2nd March 1987
Death placeJakarta, Indonesia
High SchoolN/A
CollegeGadjah Mada University, University of Hawaii
EducationPostgraduate
ProfessionGeologist, Geographer
Active YearsThe 1950s- 1980
CountryIndonesia
NationalityIndonesian
HeightN/A
WeightN/A
Eye colorBlack
Hair colorBlack
Sexual OrientationStraight
RelationshipMarried before death
Spouse(s)Ann Dunham (1965- 1980)Erna Kristina (1980- 1987)
Girlfriend(s)N/A
ChildrenBarack Obama (Stepson), Maya Soetoro-Ng, Rahayu Soetoro, Yusuf Soetoro
TattoosNo
Social Media HandlesN/A
Net worthN/A

He was a child of royalty.


Did you know that Lolo Soetoro was a child of royalty? Well, he was born to the Sultan of Yogyakarta and the former Sultan’s first wife. That makes him the first in line for the Yogyakarta throne! However, he was born out of wedlock and was never eligible for the title of Sultan. His parents were not married when he was born – and that was a big deal in 1930s Indonesia. In fact, it was so scandalous that his father did not acknowledge Lolo as his son until he was 12 years old! In addition to his royal blood, Lolo Soetoro was also a member of the Indonesian nobility. He was a member of the Order of the Golden Heart, an honor given to those who have made significant contributions to the Indonesian people.

He met Ann when she was only 16 years old.


Did you know that Lolo Soetoro met Ann when she was only 16 years old? She was attending a Honolulu-based school and he was a visiting exchange student. They were introduced by Ann’s friend Cynthia and eventually fell in love, marrying when Ann was just 19 years old. The two moved to Indonesia when Ann became pregnant with Barack Obama and remained there for almost the next decade. They had two children together, Maya and Barack, before divorcing in 1979. While their marriage ended, Ann and Lolo remained close friends until his death.

He served as an Indonesian soldier during the country’s war for independence.


Did you know that Lolo Soetoro was a soldier in Indonesia’s War for Independence? In 1945, he joined the Indonesian Army’s campaign against the Dutch colonial authorities. After Indonesia declared independence later that year, he became a sergeant in the Indonesian Army. However, his military career came to an end in the early 1950s. After that, he worked in various jobs and began to become more politically involved, even serving as the chairman of the Indonesian Students Association’s Hawaii branch.

His birth name is originally Kusno.


Did you know that his birth name is actually Kusno? He later changed it to Soetoro when he moved to the U.S. to study at the University of Hawaii. He also later changed it again, legally changing his name to Lolo Soetoro after marrying Ann. Why does the name change? Well, it’s not entirely clear. After marrying Ann, Lolo Soetoro adopted her last name and began to use the name, Barack Obama. Lolo and Ann even started a small business named “B and O Tax Service” to help support their growing family.

He had a rough childhood and he grew up in poverty.


Did you know that Lolo Soetoro had a rough childhood and he grew up in poverty? While he was born into a royal family, he didn’t always have access to money or education. In fact, when he was just six years old, his father died. After that, Lolo and his siblings were raised by a single mother who struggled financially. He spent much of his childhood in poverty, even being sent to work on a plantation to help support his family.

After marrying Ann, he left for Indonesia and eventually became a soldier.


Did you know that after marrying Ann, he left for Indonesia and eventually became a soldier? He moved there in 1959 to study at the University of Indonesia. During that time, he became a member of the Indonesian Socialist Party. After Indonesia secured its independence from the Netherlands, he was recruited by the military to fight against the British. He was on the front lines when Britain formally recognized Indonesia’s independence in 1949. After that, he continued his military career as an officer in the Indonesian Army. He then left Indonesia in 1967, just a few years before a brutal war between the government and the Indonesian Communist Party broke out.

When Soetoro returned to Hawaii, he became a campus recruiter for the Indonesian military.


Did you know that when Lolo Soetoro returned to Hawaii, he became a campus recruiter for the Indonesian military? During his time in Indonesia, he had a close relationship with the army and he became a recruiting agent for the military in Hawaii. While some claim that he was recruiting for the CIA and not the Indonesian military, there is no evidence to back that up. If that was true, he would have been committing a crime, since the CIA was barred from operating on U.S. soil. He was even briefly arrested in connection with this recruitment, although he was later released. After that, he returned to Indonesia and was never arrested by U.S. authorities.

He died from liver cancer at age 52.


Did you know that Lolo Soetoro died from liver cancer at age 52? He was diagnosed with cancer when he was just 43 years old and his condition worsened over the next seven years. He died from the disease in 1987, two years before his son became the first African-American to be elected as U.S. President.

Final Words


Lolo Soetoro has an interesting story and he has been the subject of many conspiracy theories. After reading this article, you probably have a lot of questions about this man who fathered the former president. If you want to learn more about Lolo Soetoro, then be sure to share this article with your friends and family!

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