Chili's apologizes for taking meal from vet, manager put on leave

After a very public outcry, the parent company of Chili's Bar & Grill restaurants has offered a personal apology to the Army veteran who felt humiliated at the treatment he received from a Chili's employee on Veterans Day.

A manager at the Chili's Bar & Grill in Cedar Hill, Texas -- a suburb of Dallas -- took a free meal from Ernest Walker after challenging his military service. Walker, who had shown the manager documentation of his service, recorded his interaction and posted it to Facebook.

Read More: Army veteran humiliated on Veterans Day when Chili’s takes back his free meal 

In a statement issued Monday, Chili's President Kelli Valade said she personally apologized to Ernest Walker for the manager's actions and thanked him for his service to the country, reports NBC5 in Dallas Fort Worth.

The station also reports that the manager was put on administrative leave, not fired. Company representatives said Walker did not want the manager fired.

In response to the incident, an Arizona resident launched a GoFundMe page to raise $100 to buy Walker a meal. The page had raised $975 as of Tuesday morning.

Walker has asked that the money be used to feed hungry veterans.

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About the Author

Nedra Rhone
Nedra Rhone
Nedra Rhone has been a features reporter with the AJC for 10 years. She’s written about everything from fashion to food to news.