Updated: July 27, 2012 6:38PM
ATLANTA (AP) — The longtime spokesman for fast-food chain Chick-fil-A died Friday. He was 60.
The Atlanta-based company said in a prepared statement that vice president for corporate public relations Donald A. Perry died suddenly Friday morning. The cause of death was not released by the company.
Perry worked at Chick-fil-A nearly 29 years.
“Don was an incredible friend, a consummate PR professional, and was absolutely in love with Chick-fil-A. His passing leaves a great hole in my life as well as the lives of everyone who worked with him,” said Steve Robinson, executive vice president for marketing at Chick-fil-A.
The privately owned company known for putting faith ahead of profits by closing on Sundays sparked a new skirmish in the culture wars when president Dan Cathy recently took a public position against same-sex marriage. Cathy said the company is “guilty as charged” in support of what he called the biblical definition of the family unit.
Gay rights groups called for a boycott, a Muppets toy was pulled from kids’ meals and politicians weighed in.
Christian conservatives, however, threw their support behind the company.