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Morton's Steakhouse is donating thousands of dollars to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital after a dispute between a cancer patient and management at the chain's Nashville location led to a scathing online backlash.

Robert Chambers was with a group of family and colleagues at the Church Street restaurant on Friday when a Morton's employee asked Chambers to take off his hat, according to a Facebook post that went viral this weekend.

Chambers was wearing the hat to combat side effects of chemotherapy, according to the post by Morgan Overholt, one of his co-workers who also was at Morton's. A heated exchange at the restaurant between his family and management followed.

Overholt posted that a server asked the police to get involved.

Metro Police spokesman Don Aaron said that at about 9:30 p.m., a manager flagged down two police officers who were down the street in Church Street Park and asked them to help get a group to leave the restaurant.

"By the time they got there everything had been essentially diffused," Aaron said. But Aaron said he could not confirm whether the two incidents were related.

A wave of harshly critical feedback rose throughout the weekend as the story spread online, prompting Morton's to issue a public apology.

"There was a complete and total misunderstanding by our staff who had no idea that our guest had a medical condition. Our actions were uninformed and our intentions were not malicious," Morton's COO Tim Whitlock said on the company's Facebook page.

"As a sign of our sincere apology and commitment to the community, we are donating on behalf of Mr. Chambers, $2,000.00 to the St. Jude's Hospital. In addition, Morton's The Steakhouse will also partner with Mr. Chambers to underwrite a cancer fundraiser."

Morton's then shared a Facebook post from Chambers.

"Apology accepted time (to) be on," he wrote. "I have more important things to fight than Morton's."

Chambers and Overholt did not respond to messages seeking comment.

But in a Facebook post, Chambers said he was not interested in speaking to the media.

"That would only create more issues," he wrote. "I would like to ask that the outcome of this situation simply be empathy toward others."

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