A group of firefighters are angry over a South Carolina restaurant’s alleged refusal to allow them to participate in a burger-eating challenge in memory of a colleague who had died just days earlier.
The incident occurred on Sept. 19 at Mojo’s Famous Burgers and More in Travelers Rest, South Carolina, where the firefighters asked to take the Quadruple Coronary Challenge, Fox Carolina reported. It involves eating a quadruple-stacked burger with cheese, bacon chili and fried eggs in between four grilled cheese sandwiches within an hour.
The group, from the North Greenville Fire Department, wanted to remember Jordan Howard, a lieutenant who was killed on Sept. 17 after he was struck by a motorist fleeing police. Howard was riding a motorcycle at the time, and the motorist who hit him was driving on the wrong side of the road, WYFF reported.
Howard had planned to take the burger challenge, which sparked the firefighters' decision to do the challenge in honor their fallen colleague.
“As the burger came out to the table the owner came to bring it to us and asked who was doing it so we told him the four of us were splitting it,” firefighter Chuck Pritchett wrote in a Facebook post. "He then advised us that the meal was intended for one person and he did not care why we were doing it [and said] that we were not allowed back in his restaurant again.
“We tried to explain everything again and he once again told us he DID NOT care why, just don't come back.”
When the men asked for a refund, staff allegedly told them that Mojo’s did not need “that type of business,” Fox Carolina reported.
Restaurant owner Preston Reeder claimed that there had been a misunderstanding and that the group only explained why they were doing the challenge shortly before they left. Had they said it was in memory of Howard earlier, there would have been no problem, Reeder said.
Reeder added that he reached out to the firefighters to apologize and explain, but they have not responded. North Greenville Fire Chief Lee Kelly said there was no misunderstanding, and Mojo’s could not put it right with an apology.
A funeral service for Howard was held on Sept. 20, WYFF reported. Hundreds attended the funeral, where more than a dozen fire trucks from local stations lined up for the procession.
“I was a firefighter and ... this is what we do,” guest Audrey Pace told WYFF. "We come together in a time of tragedy."