Millionaire founder of US restaurant dies by suicide after COVID-19Last updated on Mar 23, 2021, 12:11 pm
Kent Taylor, the 65-year-old founder and CEO of Texas Roadhouse restaurant chain, died by suicide last week after reportedly suffering from several post-coronavirus symptoms, including severe tinnitus.
However, it remains unclear when Taylor was diagnosed with COVID-19.
In a heartfelt statement, his family and colleagues remembered him as a big-hearted entrepreneur who always put people first.
May his soul rest in peace.
'Kent leaves an unmatched legacy'
"Kent leaves an unmatched legacy as a people-first leader, which is why he often said that Texas Roadhouse was a people company that just happened to serve steaks," his family and company's joint statement read.
"He changed the lives of hundreds of millions of employees and guests over the past 28 years. He also impacted hundreds of thousands of people through his generous...donations (sic)."
'He battled and fought hard'
Taylor "battled and fought hard like the former track champion that he was, but the suffering that greatly intensified in recent days became unbearable," his family members and colleagues said in the statement.
Taylor had launched the first Texas Roadhouse in 1993
Taylor had launched the first Texas Roadhouse in Clarksville, Indiana, in 1993.
Even though it was a slow start for the company, it eventually became one of the most-loved restaurants in America.
The chain has since grown to include 611 domestic locations in 49 states across the US and 28 international locations in 10 foreign countries, according to the information provided by the company.
Taylor was also known for his philanthropic work
Taylor was known for giving back to the society through his "generous and often anonymous" philanthropic contributions, his family said.
Even in his final days, he managed to help out others - by committing to fund a clinical study to help members of the military experiencing tinnitus, a condition that involves ringing in the ears and has been linked to COVID-19 in recent studies.
Louisville Mayor, others mourn Taylor's passing
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer remembered Taylor as a "much loved and one-of-a-kind citizen."
"He was a maverick entrepreneur who embodied the values of never giving up and putting others first," Fischer wrote on Twitter.
Meanwhile, Jerry Morgan - a 23-year veteran of Texas Roadhouse chain - has now been appointed to the role of the company's CEO.
If you're having suicidal thoughts, please seek help
In case you need help or know someone who does, you can reach out to AASRA for suicide prevention counseling. Their number is 022 2754 6669 (24 hours).
You can also contact the Hyderabad-based Roshni NGO at +914066202000 or COOJ at +918322252525.
Sneha India Foundation, which works 24X7, can be contacted at +914424640050.
Vandrevala Foundation has trained counselors, and their number is 18602662345.