ST. PETERSBURG, FL
- For 22- 1/2 years, Janice Sullivan put her heart and soul into working for Walmart.
"Walmart was my family. I didn't have any other family than them,"
But last Thanksgiving, Sullivan said she felt abandoned by her employer. As customers packed the store for Black Friday, Janice said managers told her to guard the entrance of the store making sure no customers exited from there. That's when she said one angry customer wouldn't listen.
"I said I'm sorry ma'am you have to go around the registers to go out. She said no I'm going out and then she just gave me a big push," she said.
Three days later, Sullivan said Walmart fired her because she laid her hands on the customer. Sullivan defends herself.
"I grabbed her to keep me from falling. That is why I grabbed her," she said.
Walmart told us in a statement: "Based on the information we have, the situation led to a bad experience for our customer and it could have been avoided. We had to make a tough decision."
Sullivan said the whole incident was caught on tape. When we asked about the video, Walmart told us they would not release the security tape.
At 73, Sullivan tried to collect unemployment, but said she was denied by the state. Since then she had to sell her house and has maxed out her credit cards to make it.
"Nobody wants to hire me," she said.
Walmart said they understand it is a difficult situation, but Sullivan said she will never understand why she was not given a second chance.
Janice Sullivan's neighbors have set up a website to help her with finances: www3.indiegogo.com/Jan-Sullivan2012