A man has resigned his position as Santa Claus for the town of Forest City, North Carolina, after he fat-shamed a nine-year-old boy.
The man, who was not identified by name, was forced to resign his position as Santa Claus for telling a nine-year-old to “lay off the hamburgers and fries” when the boy asked for an iPod touch and drone for Christmas, the Daily Mail reported.
The boy, Anthony Mayse, said the Santa really disrespected him and made him cry.
“It affected me so bad that I was crying until I went to bed that night,” he said. “And I want to say to him, ‘You don’t want to disrespect a 9-year-old. Even though what shape and size you are, it doesn’t matter.’”
The man has portrayed Santa for at least ten years. As part of the job, he has played Santa at the town’s Christmas tree lighting ceremony, Christmas parade, and on several weekends at the town’s Santa house, in exchange for $1,000 each holiday season.
He was scheduled to play Santa the next two weekends, and the town has not yet found a replacement.
The town manager said Santa apologized to the Mayse family and his supervisor, but both Anthony and his mother said that is not enough.
“When he went to apologize to me he didn’t even mean it,” Anthony said.
“I’m hoping he’s fired, because I don’t want any kid feeling like he did Saturday,” his mother, Ashley Mayse, said. “I mean, it destroyed him.”