The message, a picture that showed two black men and someone wearing a gorilla suit playing the drums, went out Thursday on the chain's Twitter account, The New York Times reported. It was captioned "Which drummer is not like the others?"
The tweet was deleted soon after it was sent.
"We have zero tolerance for anything so stupid and offensive," Stephen Holmes, the chain's corporate communications director, said. "The outside agency that created the tweet and the Home Depot associate who posted it have been terminated. We're also closely reviewing our social media procedures to determine how this could have happened, and how to ensure it never happens again."
Holmes did not name the agency or the employee. The tweet was part of a college football promotion.
Dennis Rodman pledges to end trips to North Korea
Jessica Simpson shares three-way kiss with friends in photo