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This Woman’s Sister Was Dying And Her Boss’s Response To Her Missing Work Is Upsetting, And Sadly, Not Uncommon

There is a saying that goes: People don’t quit bad jobs, they quit bad bosses. This woman’s viral TikTok video proves that there is a lot of merit to that statement. When she gets a call telling her that her sister is dying, one boss is understanding and accommodating. The other, however, is very much the opposite. Here is her story.

Bad Boss vs. Good Boss

Hillary Zinks is a makeup artist in the film industry. She also works as a waitress for some extra cash at a local resort in Colorado. One day while on set, she got a call from a hospital in Las Vegas where her sister lived telling her that her sister was brain dead. The doctors put her on life support but she was going to die very soon. They called Hillary because she was listed as her sister’s next of kin. (1)


this gets good. Wait until the end.

♬ original sound – Hillary Zinks

Barely able to process what was happening, she went to her boss, a very well known and respected person in the industry, that she needed to go to Vegas immediately. Her boss felt horribly for her. She told Hillary that no job is worth missing life over and to go do whatever she needed to do.


“She made me feel like a human being and not just a workhorse. There were no questions asked except concern and curiosity about the situation,” Hillary said. “Sometimes jobs make you feel one-dimensional, as if you’re only put on this earth to work for them. She saw me as a complete human with a life and a family just as complex as her own. I felt understood, appreciated, and cared for,” (2)

Read: Why Some Experts Suggest That People Over 40 Should Only Work 3 Days a Week


Boss Number Two

Several hours later, during her eight-hour drive to the hospital in Las Vegas, she remembered that she should probably inform her other boss that she would not make it in for her shift. She quickly sent her manager explaining the situation. The response she got, however, was shockingly inhumane.


“I do understand and I am sorry for what you are experiencing,” she wrote. “I’m curious why you are letting me know 2 hours prior to your shift?”

From there, her boss’s responses got progressively worse. She went to try and make Hillary feel guilty for the extra work she would be putting on her coworkers that shift. The manager said that they had a 50 person table coming in and only two people to work the shift. Her not being there would make her coworker’s shift very difficult.

Hillary was incredulous. As she was driving and thinking about this woman’s response, she realized how insane it was and how she couldn’t possibly continue working for someone like this. With that, she decided that once she got to the hospital, she would quit.

Upon arrival, she sent her boss a quick message letting her know that she didn’t care that other people might have a difficult shift. What she was going through was a whole lot worse than a busy shift at a restaurant. She then let her know that she was quitting, accompanied by a photo of her posing with her comatose sister’s middle finger pointed upwards and facing the camera.

Hillary holding her sister's hand

Read: A CEO who gives his employees $2,000 to go on vacation says people are more productive than ever


Karma Comes Back

Hillary decided to share her story on TikTok as a reminder to other people, especially young people new to the workforce, that you don’t need to put up with abusive bosses. Everyone deserves a boss who treats them as a whole human with a life and loved ones outside of their jobs. She received thousands of comments, particularly stories from others who have had similarly horrible experiences with bosses.


A few days later she got a phone call from the supervisor of the resort where she had recently quit. They informed her that the manager in question had been fired and that they were deeply sorry for what Hillary was going through and how the manager treated her.


 “The supervisor asked about my sister and I let him know she died that weekend. His heart sank for me. He then offered me my job back. I gave myself a few weeks to grieve and then let him know that I’d come back. My sister died as a hero, donating four of her organs.” she said.

If you are a boss or manager, this story goes to show how powerful it can be to simply remember that your employees are humans. Their job is only a part of their life and likely, at the end of the day, isn’t the most important thing to them. Remember this, treat them well, and they will remain loyal and hard working.

Keep Reading: People Reveal the Jobs That Might Be Way Overpaid



  1. Tiktok
  2. This Woman Had Two Jobs. She Found Out Her Sister Was Dying. Here’s How Each Boss Reacted When She Told Them She Needed Time Off Work.Buzzfeed. Krista Torres. December 20, 2021.
Julie Hambleton
Freelance Writer
Julie Hambleton has a BSc in Food and Nutrition from the Western University, Canada, is a former certified personal trainer and a competitive runner. Julie loves food, culture, and health, and enjoys sharing her knowledge to help others make positive changes and live healthier lives.