Paul McIlhenny, the chairman and chief executive of the company that makes Tabasco sauce, has died. He was 68.
McIlhenny Company, based in Avery Island, Louisiana, said he died Saturday. The cause of death was not immediately clear.
"All of McIlhenny Company and the McIlhenny and Avery families are deeply saddened by this news," Tony Simmons, president of McIlhenny Company, said in a statement Sunday. "We will clearly miss Paul's devoted leadership but will more sorely feel the loss of his acumen, his charm and his irrepressible sense of humor."
He joined the 145-year-old company in 1967 and is credited with overseeing years of record growth in sales and earnings. He is also credited with introducing new flavors and products, and expanding where Tabasco brand products are sold.