Society

Cancer Patient Says She Was Mocked By Wal-Mart Employees

| by Arthur Kogan
Wal-Mart.Wal-Mart.

A teacher, wife, mother of one and cancer survivor claims she was recently ridiculed by employees in Wal-Mart because of her appearance.

Johnna Moore Utzman finished her last round of chemotherapy and had a double mastectomy last August but was not expecting to receive an ignorant reaction from adults.

"A kid, when they tell you something... they are pure at heart, they don't mean to hurt you, and you realize that," says Utzman. "But these were adults."

Utzman says the employees came into the restroom when she was visiting the store in West Monroe, Louisiana, with her family on March 27.

"All of a sudden, these two employees come bursting in, 'Sir, you can't be in here! Sir, you can't be here.' They started laughing and they went out," says Utzman.

Popular Video

A police officer saw a young black couple drive by and pulled them over. What he did next left them stunned:

Popular Video

A police officer saw a young black couple drive by and pulled them over. What he did next left them stunned:

"That was a woman? She looked like a man," Utzman remembers them saying.

"That was the most hurtful thing I have been through in this whole cancer process," says Utzman, who felt humiliated due to the actions of the employees. She says it was one of the worst experiences she has ever endured.

She is hoping her story will empower others to embrace their own personal differences.

"I didn't ask to go through eight chemo treatments that caused me to lose my hair," she says. "I didn't ask for the insomnia or the fear, the fear that this God-awful disease may one day return."

She's hoping Wal-Mart and other businesses will make some type of sensitivity training mandatory for employees, rather than being given a simple apology.

"If we can change one person's attitude or one person's outlook, then we have made a difference," says Utzman.

"What do you see when you look in the mirror?" asked KNOE's Jillian Corder.

"I see a blessed woman with a beautiful smile, who's endured a lot. When I see myself, I can wake up every morning, even when I have a bad day, it's still a good day, because God made it," says Utzman.

Wal-Mart released the following statement about the incident: "This behavior is not acceptable. We have spoken to Ms. Utzman and have apologized to her. We are disappointed in the actions of the associates involved and have suspended them as we continue our internal investigation."

"Its not here," Utzman says rubbing her head. She points to her heart and says, "Its here."

Sources: KFDX, KNOE    

Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons