Dallas Cowboys apologize to family for mistreatment of handicapped daughter
COLEMAN, Texas (KTXS) - A Big Country couple received an apology from the Dallas Cowboys after staff at AT&T Stadium in Arlington mistreated their handicapped daughter.
Michael Walters said Wednesday the team has invited his family, including their wheelchair-bound daughter, to watch the Cowboys game against the Seattle Seahawks on Christmas Eve. The girl will be on the field and get to meet the players.
"It's good to see that there still some good in this world, that they cared about it," Walters said.
Walters told KTXS on Tuesday that the AT&T Stadium staff was rude and unaccommodating to their 5-year-old daughter when they were there Saturday for his son's pee-wee football game.
"We were made aware of the situation and we wanted to make it right immediately," Joe Trahan, media relations for the Cowboys, said on Wednesday.
Walters posted a Facebook video Saturday about his experience shortly after the game ended.
"I didn't want to be mad at them. It killed me to make that video," Walters said
Trahan told KTXS the organization takes full responsibility for the mishap and that the incident doesn't represent the Cowboys organization.
"That's not what we're all about. We value him as a fan and more importantly as a human being, and we were immediately quick to rectify this once we were notified," Trahan said.
Walters posted another Facebook Live thanking everyone for their support. He asked people to share it as well so that the Cowboys get the credit they deserve for making it right.
Walters said he told the Cowboys executive his original video wasn't posted to get something from the organization.
"I told him that's not what it was about. I just wanted to help families and show the world that they belong there," Walters said. "And he said he understood that but they wanted to make it right."
The Dallas Cowboys emphasized that AT&T Stadium has accommodations for those who are disabled and their goal is to prevent this from happening to another family.
The Dallas Cowboys may have lost some die-hard fans from the Big Country who say they were mistreated by the staff at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.
Michael Walters, of Coleman, and his family were at the venue Saturday to watch his son's pee-wee football game. But, he said the stadium's staff ruined the experience.
"I'm shaking, it was so embarrassing," Walters said in a Facebook video he posted shortly after the game, which as of Tuesday had 23,000 views.
He said the staff was rude and unaccommodating to his 5-year-old daughter who is confined to a wheelchair.
"It made us feel like we didn't matter, like we was in their way, like she's handicapped she don't need to be down there," Walters said. "And that's a terrible feeling because she deserves to be with everybody."
Walters said his bad experience began at the parking lot when employees told him he couldn't bring the wheelchair into AT&T Stadium.
After he told them his daughter couldn't walk, they wouldn't let his daughter sit close to the field. He said they made his daughter and wife sit in a section at the very top of the stadium.
"There was no emotion, no sympathy, like I'm sorry this is happening. Let me try to make this better," his wife Codi said.
The Walters consider themselves loyal Cowboys fans, but after what happened Saturday, Michael said he didn't watch Sunday's game versus the New York Giants.
"It's the first game I missed in over 20 something years," he said.
But he and his wife said the issue is bigger than AT&T Stadium.
"It ain't for the attention, it ain't for the money. It's to show families it's all right to stand up for their kids," Michael Walters said.
The Walters said they already complained to the Cowboys about their experience, but have not received a response from them.
KTXS made repeated attempts to speak with the Cowboys and the AT&T Stadium's staff of public relations, and left several voicemails, but did not receive a response before the story aired Tuesday.