McDonald's Employee With Down Syndrome Retires After 33 Years, Co-Workers Throw Party

He was the lobby manager.

A longtime employee of McDonald’s who has Down syndrome was sent off with a huge celebration for his retirement after three decades.

Daniel Lybrink, 61, has been working as a “lobby manager” at a McDonald's in Brighton, Mich., for 33 years so when his caretaker, Molly Wisuri, told his co-workers that he’d be retiring, they knew they had to give him a special send-off.

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“I believe that McDonald's truly was one of the first enterprises to start taking in employees with disabilities," Wisuri told "That store just became another family for Daniel. He was very well-respected and the peer support was fantastic."

Daniel became well-known in the community due to his hard work and warm demeanor.

“He has a very outgoing personality. He’s a kisser and hugger,” Wisuri said.

Even when he had heart attacks during his employment and shattered his knee at a Special Olympics game, the first thing in Daniel's mind was when he could get back to work.

“McDonald’s called and checked on him and sent him cards,” Wisuri said. “He did not like to miss work. His job was a huge part of his identity.”

On his last day, May 8, McDonalds threw Daniel a retirement party.

"He was very surprised," Wisuri said. "We were able to keep it a secret. He received beautiful gifts and money and McDonald's gift cards. He was emotional. It was very sweet; it was very moving.”

Daniel's co-workers got him a cake and several members from the community and former employees dropped in to say goodbye.

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Although Daniel is sad to be leaving this part of his life behind, he is moving to another town in Michigan and plans to spend his time fishing and traveling

“I think it’s really important that people accept disabled people are able to work in the community, so kudos to the world,” Wisuri said. “I want [his experience] to be like everyone else that is retired. The disabled should get to live out the rest of their lives doing what they want to do it — just like everyone else.”

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