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Burger King Employee Who Only Received a Gift Bag of ‘Stuff Laying Around’ After 27 Years of Perfect Attendance Receives Over $159K In Donations

A 54-year-old fast-food employee, who has spent half his life working for the same restaurant, shows gratitude to his company for his anniversary gift. Despite it not being everything he expected, the cook/cashier says he is “thankful” to have received anything and is surprised by fans donating to a crowdfund to reward his loyalty.

Kevin Ford has worked for Burger King, under the Culinary Union Local 226, for over 27 years. And in celebration of his anniversary with the company, he received a plastic drawstring bag filled with items supposedly meant to express the restaurant’s appreciation for his hard work.

In a viral video, Ford is in the kitchen area on the Harry Reid International Airport Burger King, masked up, in uniform, and sharing with people on social media the items in his gift bag: one movie ticket, a large bag of Reese’s Pieces candy, a Starbucks plastic cup and straw, a lanyard, two ink pens, a couple of key chains and two rolls of Lifesavers candy.

Captioned over his TikTok video, he writes, “My Reward That My Job Got Me for 27 Years, NEVER MISSED A DAY OF WORK … ty.” 

He also writes, “Loyalty Pays Off!” and “So Thankful.”

While Ford is “thankful,” he was hoping for a little more.

“I’m happy about anything I get. I’m not that type of person,” he shared in an exclusive interview with TMZ. “Believe me I’ve been through a lot, so, I’m happy about what I got.”

Ford went on to share that through working in the union, he has been able to see how other restaurants reward loyal workers who have dedicated decades to their companies, and some of them get monetary bonuses and sometimes vehicles.

“I worked for the Culinary Union 226 Las Vegas, you know, and they work for different themes out there,” he explained.

“A lot of times you can be working for Burger King, you can be working for any place, all these different restaurants,” and go on to get really great gifts, he pointed out. But Ford thinks the corporations have “lost touch with their workers” and with possibly considering what makes for appropriate gifts.

He said HMS Host, the company that does much of the hiring for Burger King, gave him “stuff laying around, that they put together.”

He added, “We used to get checks, you know for 20 years, and I asked what I actually thought that movie ticket was. I was like ‘Hey, they finally gave me my car,’ ” he recalled. “Then when I see that there were not even two movie tickets … there was only, I was like ‘This is just too much.’ ”

If he were to have received a car, he would have liked to have a new Ford hybrid, an American car that might be cheap on gas.

Ford has worked tirelessly at Burger King for almost 30 years and says he has never missed a day. Part of one of his 27th-anniversary wishes is to get some time off so he can “relax” and go hang out with his friends and “have some fun.”

“I can’t even think about having a day off,” he said. “I haven’t had a day in so long.”

Burger King responded to the attention the video has garnered with a statement about the brand’s milestone award system.

 “The Burger King brand and its many franchisees nationwide are committed to recognizing and celebrating the achievements of the thousands of people serving across a wide range of roles — all dedicated to providing our guests a world-class experience,” the corporation said.

The statement continues, “Following review with this location’s franchisee, we’ve learned that this video depicts a Team Member in receipt of a peer-to-peer reward in recognition of a short-term positive performance/experience. The franchisee offers its Team Members a robust employee recognition program, which includes the recognition of tenure milestones and monetary awards.”

Ford’s next tenure milestone will most likely be in three years when he celebrates his Tricennial or Pearl anniversary. 

After the video gained traction, Ford’s daughter Seryna set up a GoFundMe campaign, hoping to lift her father’s spirits and show him how much he means to people. 

She wrote, “The man in that video is my father. He has worked at his job for 27 years and yes, he has never missed a day of work.”

She shared how he originally began working at Burger King after gaining custody of her and her other sister. Eventually, Ford remarried, the daughter added, and continued to work at the fast-food restaurant to make sure his family had stellar health insurance through the union. 

On his salary, he was able to put four daughters through high school and college. Seryna says her dad, though he looks young, is thinking about retirement and if he were to change his job now, he would lose his retirement benefits.

The public, who had already fallen in love with his honesty, humility and sense of gratitude, responded to her petition and in a few days raised over $159,000. Because contributors shattered the original goal in a little over a day, she raised the cap to $175,000.

Comedian David Spade donated a whopping $5,000.

Ford, who became famous last year when his co-workers gave him a chocolate cake for his hard work, says he is overwhelmed by the outpouring of support he has received from strangers wanting him to have a little bit of joy.

Tearfully, he shares his sincere gratitude, “It’s so much and rich and all the love that people are giving me … it is so overwhelming. I just want to thank everyone.”

He continued, “I’m grateful for anything. I don’t wanna say ‘I want this or that.’ All I want is to go to work, have fun and make everybody’s life better like they’re doing to me.”

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