10.23.06

Former Usher Sues Mets

Posted in Baseball, The Law at 2:36 pm by

From the New York Daily News’ Jordan Lite.

An elderly usher who worked at Shea Stadium for 42 years has filed a $5 million damage suit against the Mets charging he was fired because he’s too old.

William Cook says he’s not the only veteran who has been pushed out by the team.

“They got rid of the old-timers. This is strictly discrimination,” said Cook, 76, of Brooklyn. “There’s no other word that would describe the situation.”

On the field, the Mets have no qualms about playing Julio Franco, who, at 48, is the oldest major leaguer. But Cook said his supervisor told him in April that he wouldn’t “last this season” after he found out how old he was. He was let go in July, and the stress was so bad he had a heart attack, Cook says.

“A day wouldn’t pass when this supervisor wouldn’t ask me how old I was. It was a stress, it was a weight on me: Why is this guy asking me for my age? This went on month after month,” Cook said.

“They treated me like garbage. And at 76, to get anything comparable to what I had, those days are over. You don’t get a job anymore,” he added.

In a complaint filed Monday in Queens Supreme Court, Cook alleges that a supervisor, Vincent Montemarno, berated him in front of other ushers and fans. One supervisor called him a “piece of crap” and “a rat,” the documents said.

Without sounding cavalier about the serious issue of age discrimination, if Mr. Cook or any other “usher” at Shea Stadium has performed a valuable function besides demanding a tip and/or harrassing patrons who have the temerity to change seats during poorly attended blowouts, it’s news to me.

3 Responses to “Former Usher Sues Mets”

  1. jere says:

    Seriously. Meanest ushers in the world. Those guys actually track your movement. Try to sneak down once, and they’re radioing to their buddies. It’s ri-goddamn-diculous. Score one for our side. (Although they’ll probably just hire younger guys to do the same crap.)

  2. Marc says:

    When I attended game 3 of the season back in April, we were sitting along the first base side in the field level orange seats right next to the entrance/exit tube area. Because of this, people kept stopping to chat on their cell phones, look at their ticket stubs, etc and blocked our view of Pedro’s mediocre outing.

    When we asked the usher(s) to try to keep the area moving so we could actually see the game, the solution was for THREE elderly ushers to consistently stand right in that area and block our views.

    There is a finite limit to the amount of peanuts you can toss at the backs of the heads of ushers, but I’m not sure that the number is less than the number of peanuts in 2 overpriced bags at Shea Stadium.

    Assholes.

  3. Chuck Meehan says:

    Ushers at baseball games demanding a tip?…I suppose Mr Cook wouldnt consider moving to Philly, but if he did, there would be no age discrimination whatsoever working as an usher for the Phillies. I always wondered if the Phils sent vans around to retirement homes under the guise of treating senior citizens to a free game and then handing them a shirt and assigning them a section to usher. I dont know for sure about CBP, but there was never any problem upgrading ones seats at Veterans Stadium.

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