Beloved 77-year-old toll collector fired for paying driver’s toll

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BOCA GRANDE, Fla. — A beloved Florida toll booth worker was suddenly fired for paying someone’s $5 toll, according to WBBH.

Vladislav Samsonov, who goes by Sam, had worked at the toll booth for nearly 30 years.

“In my eyes there was no crime committed, I just helped somebody out,” Samsonov told WBBH.

The 77-year-old explained that when he realized he had charged a tractor-trailer driver too little the week before he paid the $5 out of his own pocket.

The tollbooth worker said he did that from time to time if a driver didn’t have enough cash.

He said the job was never about the money — it was about the people.

“After 29 years, you can’t help it,” Samsonov told WBBH. “I gave children suckers 20 years ago. Now I’m giving those children suckers for their children.”

Samsonov was asked not to pay for drivers before, but he said he was never formally written up.

As punishment for paying tolls Samsonov was offered two days a week instead of five, which he declined, according to WBBH.

“If I can’t be trusted for five days, how can I be trusted for two days?” Samsonov told WBBH.

Now Samsonov said he will look for volunteer work but will miss all the people he used to greet at the toll.