Heather Levia is out of a job after the McDonald’s employee offered to pay for some firefighters who ordered food after putting out a house fire in freezing temperatures.
The 23-year-old mother of twins was working at the Olean, New York, restaurant when a group of firefighters came in to order food. When a different fire department came in, Levia paid the $83 bill herself and asked if McDonald’s could cover the cost.
Heather Levia said this action led to her firing.
After paying the bill, the McDonald’s employee texted her boss to see if the restaurant could cover the cost, as they had done in the past for police officers. Her boss said they could not, so Levia took her question over his head to corporate. The answer was again no.
Not wanting the firefighter to have to pay, Heather Levia and the store’s other employees pooled together the money to cover their breakfast.
That is when the trouble started. After the firefighters learned that Levia and other McDonald’s employees covered their bill, some of them called the manager to complain.
When Levia came in for her next shift, her manager informed her that she was fired, The Olean Times Herald reported. Levia said the reason they gave was that she “swore at a superior,” but she denies the allegation.
“I did say this is ‘freaking’ ridiculous. But it was not implied [sic] to anybody,” she said.
The franchise’s owner, Tom Meyers, denied Levia’s assertions about the firing.
“We are aware that certain allegations have been made concerning the reasons for Heather Levia’s termination,” he said in a statement. “Out of respect for Ms. Levia and her privacy, it would not be appropriate to comment in detail on the reasons she is no longer employed by our organization. Still, it should be pointed out that the allegations are absolutely not true. We would never penalize an employee for showing appropriate gratitude for the work of our firefighters.”
McDonald’s employee Heather Levia said she doesn’t regret paying the bill for the firefighters, even though she’s now looking for a new job.