A Burger King employee, who has been working in the company for 27 years without taking a day off, went viral on social media where he's seen receiving paltry gifts from his managers for his services. But an internet donation to reward the hard-working man surprisingly raised over $300,000.
Las Vegas resident, 54 year-old Kevin Ford has been toiling away as a cashier and cook at Burger King's McCarran International Airport location since 1995.
On his 27th anniversary at the chain, his managers gifted him a backpack stuffed with a movie ticket, a Starbucks cup, candy and chocolate, FOX 11 reported.
A video soon went viral on social media where he is seen accepting the presents, without much excitement on his face. Many people who watched the clip reacted in shock as to how someone could be given such mediocre gifts as a 'thankyou' for his life-long services and loyalty with the company.
Kevin may not have been celebrated with the love and respect he deserves by his company but his daughters took charge of the momentous occasion and decided to raise a tiny fund for him, believing he deserves more than what he got to commemorate his career.
They soon set up a GoFundMe page for their dad, aiming to raise about $200 or so, without much expectations. To everyone's surprise, they ended up raising nearly $300,000 in donations and counting.
"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," Ford's daughter Seryna wrote on the fundraiser.
"He originally began working at this job as a single father when he gained custody of me and my older sister 27 years ago. Then as our family grew and he remarried, he continued to work there because of the amazing health insurance that was provided."
Seryna wrote the family was in "no way" asking for money "but if anyone feels like blessing him he would love to visit his grandchildren."
On Tuesday, his wish came true when he was flown out to New York City to appear on NBC's 'Today' show and was reunited with his grandchildren live on television.
"I haven't seen my grandkids in over four years, until the other day when 'The Today Show' flew me out to New York and I got to see them live on TV," Ford told the outlet.
"I've been crying for all these days as it is and of course I'm crying live on TV again seeing my grandbabies."
Ford said he doesn't have any plans to retire or take a vacation just yet and is solely focused on his family, referring to the donations he has received.
"You never know, it's day to day but I haven't thought of anything to do with that money except to visit my grandkids for a while and maybe put some up for their college, but I'm not even thinking about that," he told the outlet.
"I'm just working," said the hardworking man whose life's work seemed to have been rewarded through a simple effort made by his daughters to put a smile on their dad's face.