Whataburger, a popular southern burger chain, made headlines recently as a moving video of an unusual act of kindness by an employee was captured on a customer’s cell phone.
The incident was recorded in Dallas by Mika Lara, a customer who had just stopped by for to grab a bite to eat whilst on a business trip. Lara, a father from Cedar Hill, is particularly fond of the Whataburger fast food chain, which has just celebrated its 68th birthday and had just sat down to tuck into his breakfast when he witnessed a surprising scene unfold.
What he saw was an elderly man in a wheelchair struggling to communicate with an employee about his meal. Despite the man’s unclear speech, the employee was able to understand that he was asking for help cutting up his food, and she dutifully obliged.
Lara immediately began recording the pair on his phone. Describing the endearing moment to WWFA, Lara said he noticed a man in a wheelchair enter the restaurant and order, before moving to a table to wait for his meal to arrive. When the employee brought his food over, Lara recalled how, “They were trying to communicate, but couldn’t,” adding the female employee then “gestured asking if he wanted her to cut up his food and then he said yes.”
In the video, the two can be seen at a distant table, unaware that they are being filmed, while Lara is heard saying, “Humanity at its best.”
Lara was so touched by the kindness of the employee that he said he forgot he was in a fast food restaurant, where speed is usually prioritized over personal service for individual customers. “You wouldn’t think that would be part of their job,” he said, and explained that, “with everything that’s going on…in the world, it gave me some hope.”
It transpired that the old man is somewhat of a regular in the restaurant and is known to management and staff alike. According to the manager, the elderly man doesn’t have the use of his right arm and cannot speak very well. The staff at this Lemmon Avenue Whataburger, however, have a soft spot for him and are all trained to help him eat if he requests assistance from them.
Lara was so moved and encouraged that he decided to share the encounter with the media. He said that the caring behavior of the employee made his day. “We don’t see that a lot and, you know, I need to see that from time to time.”
Perhaps fast food joints are a good place to spy out hidden acts of human kindness. Earlier this year, an employee of Giraffas, a Brazilian fast food chain, was filmed going a step further and helping to feed a disabled young man.