McDonald's Worker: I Was Fired For Treating Firefighters To A Hot Meal

Worker accused of swearing to supervisor

WIVB-TVFired worker Heather Levia
A 23-year-old single mother of two in Olean, NY, claims she was fired on Valentine's Day from her job at McDonald's because she and two co-workers treated some firefighters to food out of their own pockets, according to the Olean Times Herald.

The firefighters had been fighting a house fire since 3:35am. Heather Levia says that she and the co-workers had responded to a request from The Salvation Army. When she was told by superiors that the company would not make a donation, she provided $150 in food that the three paid for.

A local Salvation Army official told the Times Herald that the organization typically sends an emergency disaster vehicle when first responders will be on a scene for a long time. The vehicle brings food, water, and blankets for both first responders and victims. According to WIVB-TV, the firefighters had been working in sub-zero temperatures.

Levia first wrote about the event on Facebook:

I have been with the olean mcdonalds for almost eight years... Today I was terminated because local firefighters called for donations for food. The mcdonalds company denied the donations to help support our firefighters. Myself and two other employees paid out of pocket to feed these firemen.. asking the office before answering yes or no to these firemen. I was told I swore and Hung up on a office worker. Who would ever think that someone would lose their job for giving to those who risk their lives to save ours... Look for my letter to the editor in the olean times herald... There will be more on this story. <sic>

WIVB-TV reported that some firefighters had initially called the McDonald's to complain, thinking that the company had forced the workers to pay for the food. According to an interview with Levia, her supervisor said, "You opened a whole bee's nest." She was allegedly fired during her next shift, accused of swearing at a supervisor.

"I did say this is 'freaking' ridiculous," Levia said "But it was not implied to anybody."

Levia has twins, two jobs, and is putting herself through nursing school, according to WIVB.

According to the Times Herald story, Levia, who was the morning shift manager, said that although she had been fired, the other two employees had not.

"I was told I was being fired for going against the wishes of McDonald's as well has having my own opinion on not donating to the firefighters," she said. "I was so caught off-guard by this. I'm very distraught that I would be fired over something like this. I was just trying to give back to the firefighters and they weren't asking for much."

The owner of the franchise, Tom Meyers, told the Times Herald that his company, the Meyers Organization, was "thoroughly investigating this matter and how it was handled." Someone from the company told the paper that the workers had been compensated for the $150. Meyers himself reportedly told WIVB that Levia's "allegations are absolutely not true."

Allegany Fire Media Officer Gordon Scott told WIVB: "It was a shock. We certainly regret the fact she lost her job."

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Why should McDonald's pay for food for a firefighter? They are paid enough money and can afford it.

February 27 2014 at 1:11 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

Type your comment hereI found this thread via

February 25 2014 at 11:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

What a missed PR momment. when they realized that the workers had provided the food anyway. They should have been given double their contribution and a some award that could have been displayed at the store. The employees probably felt uncomfortable about saying no to the Red Cross on behalf of her superiors. These three employees were actually making McDonalds look good by providing the food.
These aren''t emplployees I would fire. Sounds like they are the triustworthy type. Shame on Mc Donalds. Maybe you should have managers who are capable of thinking outside the box.

February 25 2014 at 8:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

After this I plan on leaving this world without ever eating at another mcDonalds

February 25 2014 at 10:40 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to no1chef99david's comment

Why is that? Firefighters deserve free food?? Why?

February 27 2014 at 1:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to nonosstang's comment

When YOU are out in sub-zero temperatures fighting a fire to save lives - THEN we'll talk about "free food". They aren't exactly in a position to go and get it themselves. Why shouldn't an organization like McDonald's offer free food to these men. Remember all of the outpouring to fire and police departments after 9/11? Have we lost heart? Personally, I hate McDonald's food but I won't be taking my grandchildren there anymore. This is so sad. Whether they wanted to donate the food or not - how can you penalize a worker for paying for the food HERSELF. She did not ask them to pay. It's sad that she lost her job but the other two contributors didn't. It's a sad, sad world when we can't offer food to freezing cold public servants.

February 27 2014 at 5:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down
Savage Nation

"she thought they might, because she says they routinely give free meals to Police Officers who come in" "it's very common in our store" Anyone catch THAT!
So she spilled the beans about the store comping cops but not other first responders which screams of paying for law enforcement favoritism or flat out BUYING POLICE PROTECTION, which is much more scandalous than not giving freebies to Firefighters.

February 24 2014 at 10:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I highly doubt she was fired for buying food.

February 24 2014 at 7:01 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Diablo135's comment


February 27 2014 at 5:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
William E. Skipper

McDonalds food is KILLING people every day. Look at the ingredients, look at all the studies from the medical journals, look at what chicken nuggets are actually made of. People are actually becoming informed on all the bad things McDonalds foods actually has in it and once you know, I will never go back, maybe for some fries, but thats it! I hope this girl sues the **** out of McDouches and takes them to the bank!

February 21 2014 at 11:56 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

mcdonalds food gives me heart burn and makes me feel like ****.. She should be in trouble for feeding the firefighters with such horrible food..All the firefighters are lucky they did not have to **** and have diarrhea afterwards.... or during the fire...

February 21 2014 at 11:30 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

McDonalds food is crappy anyway. However, if these employees gave from their hearts I find it very sad that McDonalds made such a big deal of it. To fire this girl is absurd, she should have been promoted for doing such a wonderful thing. McDonalds should give her job back with a promotion and pay raise and great big apology, and invite the firefighters back to a feast. Shame, Shame on McDonalds!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

February 21 2014 at 11:24 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Denese's comment

They're chicken wings are delicious!

February 27 2014 at 1:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It's no wonder I HATE PEOPLE, Try to do something nice for someone and get a kick in the a** as a reward. McDonalds should be ASHAMED of themselves. I hope the person she worked for NEVER needs help and if they do - NO ONE helps them and state the reason that it's AGAINST the RULES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

February 21 2014 at 10:02 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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