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McDonald under fire for booting out elderly couple

Updated March. 17, 2014 03:19

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Carl Becker, 87-year-old World War II veteran, and his wife Barbara, 81, who have always been enjoying McDonald hamburgers and sandwiches throughout their life, was eating crunch at the Culpeper McDonald branch near their home in Virginia as usual at 2:30 p.m. on Feb. 21.

After a while, an employee approached and started clearing around the table where the couple was sitting. They could hardly continue eating due to dust. Moments later, the branch manager came out and asked them to leave since more than half an hour passed. At the time, business was slow at the restaurant with few patrons around.

The elderly couple had enjoyed food at McDonald with their six sons and daughters and 14 grandsons and granddaughters, but they never received such mistreatment before.

Having been booted out, the couple wrote to a letter to the editor of the local newspaper “Culpeper Star-Exponent,” and their story spread like wild fire through social network service. McDonald received a flurry of harsh criticisms from across the nation. In January, McDonald had kicked out Korean American senior citizens in New York, and was under fire due to controversy over racial discrimination.

Upon hearing the pitiful story of the Becker couple, Shawn`s Smokehouse BBQ Company owner Shawn Moss pledged to offer the couple free scrunch once a week throughout their life. Noting that Becker is a war veteran, he said “We’re also going to do a ‘Scrunch Day’ on Wednesday, and offer free coffee to all seniors and veterans.”

McDonald, which was under harsh public criticism, sent the Beckers two free coffee coupons, which the couple rejected. The fast food chain belatedly sent them a letter of apology, and promised to conduct a probe. Ms. Becker said that they would continue eating at McDonald`s, but not at the Culpeper branch, displaying remaining anger.