Cancer Victim, Friends Say They Were Denied Restaurant Service


UPDATED: Wednesday January 30, 2013 6:35 PM

Sydney Hodge is a 17-year-old Paint Valley High School senior, who was diagnosed with cancer at Christmas. Friends have since rallied around her.  

Soon after speaking with 10tv on Tuesday, Emily Bales said she, Sydney, and two other friends went out for dinner on Tuesday night.  

All four said they wore medical masks, as support for Sydney.  

“We were just laughing and talking to Sydney, and that's when the guy came in and wanted to seat us, and when we turned around, he was like 'mask , you take off mask,’” said Emily Bales.

Bales said the restaurant employee took menus, to seat them, and again told them to take off the masks.

She said three of them took the masks off, but said Sydney had to keep her mask on for protection, while undergoing chemotherapy.

The manager at the restaurant told 10TV that they have never turned anyone away. In fact, he said the girls are welcome right now.

“We never say no. We never say that to people,” said Jacob Luna, Manager of Los Mariachis.

Luna said he remembered the teens, but denies turning them away.

“I come ask if they want to have a seat and they didn't answer to me, and I have two more customers waiting for seats, too. And I took them and I came back and they were laughing over by the candy machine,” said Luna.

He says the teens left. That was the last he said he heard of them until their story hit social media.

“Making me sad, a lot of sad, because it never happened before. Ten years I've been working here. No problem like that,” said Luna.

He said he would tell the girls that he is sorry. The girls said an apology is all they wanted.

Hodge’s father told 10tv she underwent another chemotherapy treatment tonight.

To donate money to the Hodge family, a savings fund for the teen can be accessed at any Fifth Third bank.

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