Bar manager praised for viral response to 'cold-hearted' patron

By Ben Hooper  |  Jan. 5, 2016 at 2:13 PM
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INDIANAPOLIS, Jan. 5 (UPI) -- An Indiana bar manager is being lauded online for his sharp response to a woman's complaint about her evening being "ruined" by another patron's heart attack.

Chris Burton, a bar manager at Kilroy's Bar and Grill Downtown in Indianapolis, is being applauded by online commentators after his response to a woman named Holly Jones on Facebook went viral.

Jones posted on the restaurant's Facebook page that her New Year's Eve was "ruined by watching a dead person wheeled out from an overdose."

"The manager also told us someone dying was more important [than] us being there making us feel like our business didn't matter, but I guess allowing a junkie in the building to overdose on your property is more important [than] paying customers who are spending a lot of money!!" Jones wrote in the post, which has since been deleted.

Burton replied to the post to set the record straight -- no one had died, and the victim was not a "junkie."

"Hi Holly, thanks for reaching out!  We love feedback, whether it be positive or negative.  I especially like feedback like this so others can see the disgusting people that we have to deal with sometimes.

First of all, the 'overdosing junkie' that you speak of was a 70-year-old woman who had a heart attack. Thankfully she was revived at the hospital and survived. It sounds like you were very concerned about her so I thought you should know. This poor lady, who was celebrating New Year's Eve with her husband and son, had to be placed on the floor of a completely packed bar and have her shirt removed in front of everyone so the paramedics could work on her.

But I completely understand why you think being intoxicated [expletive] that didn't understand your bill should take priority over a human life. I especially appreciate you making your server (who doesn't curse) cry as well. I'm sure she really enjoyed working on New Year's Eve just to deal with people such as yourself. I personally had to leave a show to take a phone call from an emotional manager telling me someone died at Kilroy's and that other employees were not doing so well dealing with this. (At the time they didn't know that she was going to make it.) So I understand how inconvenient this was for your night.

But honestly, I'm glad to hear you won't be coming back to Kilroy's because we wouldn't want anyone as cold hearted and nasty as you returning. I appreciate anyone who chooses to spend their money at Kilroy's until they act like you. You can take your money anywhere else after that, and I won't lose a second of sleep over it. Happy New Year!"

Burton's response went viral online, with screenshots of the deleted post and reply being posted to social media. The restaurant asked supporters not to attempt any vigilante justice.

"There are several Holly Jones in Indianapolis. The one who posted the original complaint has taken down her profile. Please don't send any hateful messages to the other Holly's as they are just innocent locals who happen to share the same name," the eatery said in a Facebook post.

Burton told the Indianapolis Star he was surprised at the attention the incident received. He offered some advice for future customers: "Just be nice. ... People in the service industry are people. We all are humans that need to get along with each other. And everything will get handled a lot better if you are polite and nice."

Kilroy's Bar and Grill shared a GoFundMe page to help the woman who suffered the heart attack pay her medical bills.

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