Texas Roadhouse founder Kent Taylor dies at 65 after killing Covid

A man walks past a Texas Roadhouse restaurant in Arvada, Colo.

Matthew Staver | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Texas Roadhouse founder and CEO Kent Taylor died Thursday in restaurant chain announced on his Facebook page. He was 65.

Taylor died of suicide after a battle with symptoms related to the Covid-19, including severe tinnitus, the family said in a statement. Tinnitus is usually described as a sound in the ear.

“After a battle with post-Covid-related symptoms, including severe tinnitus, Kent Taylor took his own life this week,” the family said. “Kent fought and fought hard like the former track champion he was, but the suffering that has increased sharply over the past few days has become unbearable.”

Taylor’s family said Taylor recently pledged to fund a clinical trial to help members of the military suffering from tinnitus.

“We will miss you, Kent. Because of you and your dream of Texas Roadhouse, we can say we love our job every day,” the company wrote in a Facebook post Friday.

The Louisville restaurant business announced Friday that President Jerry Morgan will be named CEO after Taylor’s death.

“While you never expect the loss of such a visionary as Kent, our succession plan, which led Kent, gives us a lot of confidence,” said Greg Moore, chief executive of Texas Roadhouse.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer tweeted Thursday that the city has “lost a much-loved and unique citizen.”

“Kent’s friendly and generous spirit was his constant driving force, whether it was a friend helping a friend or building one of America’s big companies in @texasroadhouse,” Fisher wrote. “He was a great entrepreneur who embodied the values ​​of never giving up and putting others first.”

Contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline if you or someone you know is thinking of suicide or self-harm at this link or by calling 1-800-273-TALK. The hotline is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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