Serviceman Allegedly Told ‘We Don’t Like Your Kind’ at California Gas Station
Ben Deci, KTXL, Reporting, Courtesy CNN
MODESTO, California — “I’m proud to be a military member- defending our Constitution, in service so that individuals like him have the right to say what he said,” said Kelly Kjelstrom.
Kjelstrom says he was just trying to buy a soda from the corner gas station. To be specific, he says he was at the Chevron gas station at the corner of Pelandale Road and Sisk Road in Modesto.
But Kjelstrom says when he pulled out his wallet to pay, the cashier noticed his military identification.
“The person told me that they don’t like my kind, and I didn’t belong in their country,” Kjelstrom said.
The story made it’s way to social media and sparked an angry protest in front of the gas station.
“If they don’t feel like they have our support, then they’re not going to do the job to the best of their ability,” said Trudy Turnbull, an Army Mom who was one the protesters waving an American flag in front of the gas station for much of the day Tuesday.
The Chevron is a privately-owned station. It’s a franchise of the corporation that now says it’s called for a review of security tapes to see if there’s any truth to Kjelstrom’s story.
Meanwhile, company spokesman Sean Comey told FOX40 he’d been trying to get a hold of Kjelstrom all day.
“If you’ve spoken to somebody directly, if they would be willing to talk to us, we would like to talk to them directly,” Comey told FOX40 in a phone conversation.
Comey said the company is investigating, but at this point all they have is an unsubstantiated allegation. Comey said that they take claims of discrimination and improper conduct seriously.
FOX40 also spoke with the manager at the Chevron. He denied that any discrimination happened. And he said, in the three years he’s been at that location, they haven’t refused service to anyone.
As for Kjelstrom, he says he still isn’t certain what country the cashier wanted the U.S. Military out of, but he says he sure got out of the store in a hurry.
Did he end up buying that soda?
“No,” he said. “No, no, no. I’ll never buy anything there again.”