Texas Roadhouse founder and CEO Kent Taylor died by suicide as he fought the long-term symptoms of COVID-19, his company have revealed.
65-year-old Taylor is said to have been experiencing “unbearable” symptoms after grappling with coronavirus, including severe tinnitus.
“Our community and the restaurant industry lost a legend and the Taylor family lost a wonderful son, father and grandad,” said a joint statement from the company and family as per CNN.
The statement continued: “Kent battled and fought hard like the former track champion that he was, but the suffering that greatly intensified in recent days became unbearable.”
Back in March of 2020, in the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Taylor made headlines for a truly generous gesture when he donated his $800,000 salary for the rest of the calendar year towards frontline restaurant employees.
“It’s how I was raised. I did what I felt was right,” he said at the time.
“This is that kind of time where you have to persist and think differently and take care of those that are with you and lift everyone’s spirits and march forward.”
Texas Roadhouse paid tribute to him on their Facebook page, writing: “We will miss you, Kent. Because of you and your dream of Texas Roadhouse, we get to say we love our jobs every day.”
Rest in peace, Kent Taylor, and inspirational figure and a truly kind-hearted man.
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