Remembering Freia David: A woman with Down Syndrome who worked at McDonald’s for 32 years

For some people, working at McDonald’s might not be a big deal, but for Freia it meant the world.

Because Ella Freia had Down syndrome, some people doubted that she would be able to work and earn a living on her own.

But in 1984, Freia, then 20 years old, had the opportunity to go to a McDonald’s in Needham. For the next 32 years, she operated the fries station at Needham McDonalds and was loved by people in the community.

Sadly, Ella Freia died on April 30, according to CBS.

A memorial service for Freia A. David will be held June 18 at George F. Doherty & Son’s Funeral Home in Needham, where her friends, family and community members are invited, according to the obituary. of her in Legacy.

For some people, working at McDonald’s might not be a big deal, but for Freia it meant the world.

Because Ella Freia had Down syndrome, some people doubted that she would be able to work and earn a living on her own.

But in 1984, Freia, then 20 years old, had the opportunity to go to a McDonald’s in Needham. For the next 32 years, she operated the fries station at Needham McDonalds and was loved by people in the community.

Freia was born and raised in Needham, Massachusetts and moved to the Charles River Center assisted living facility as an adult.

From the age of 3 she had taken classes at the center, and throughout her life she had been helped, supported and grew up as a resident of the center in a group setting.

She was also part of the Special Olympics, her obituary said.

The center helped her believe in herself and also helped her get in touch with McDonald’s.

They thought that Ella Freia would succeed, but they could hardly have guessed that she would become the most beloved customer service professional in town for over 30 years.

For four hours a day, five days a week, Freia devoted her heart and soul to serving McDonald’s customers.

“It was nice, I’m very happy,” David told CBS Boston. “I like all my friends here.”

According to Anne-Marie Bajwa, who worked at the Charles River Center, Freia was one of the first people to get a job in the community.

But at the age of 52, Ella Freia decided it was time to move on.

The love that the community showed Freia at her farewell party was nothing short of inspiring. And she Freia deserved no less, of course!

Regarding her retirement, Freia told the newspapers that she would come to relax and take care of herself.

Family, friends, colleagues, clients and even the local media were there to thank her for her life’s work.

She was presented with a certificate acknowledging and thanking her for her accomplishments. Timothy McCoy, one of the owners of the Needham McDonald’s franchise, spoke.

“Freia’s smile, her enthusiasm and her daily hugs made our restaurant more than just a restaurant,” he said in his speech.

“We are very sad that she is retiring from her, but very happy for the time we had to work with her. Needham’s McDonald’s will never be the same without Freia David.”

Anyone who spends 32 years of her life in a job deserves recognition. Especially if they give everything day after day.

And someone who exemplifies this is Freia!

“For 32 years, she worked at McDonald’s of Needham, where she served spectacular fries, joked around with her co-workers and greeted everyone with a smile,” her obituary reads.

Sadly, Freia passed away in 2019, according to CBS. Her cause of death was not disclosed.

A memorial service for Freia was held at George F. Doherty & Son’s Funeral Home in Needham, where she invited her friends, family and community members, according to her obituary in Her Legacy.

“Freia was born into a loving family, with Down syndrome, but this never stopped her. She graduated from Needham High School, participated in the Special Olympics, had many friends, and enjoyed music, movies, and Mickey Mouse,” her obituary read.

Share Freia’s moving story with her friends and loved ones! Rest in peace!