Famed Chef Charlie Trotter, 54, Found Dead

Son finds him unresponsive in home
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 5, 2013 12:49 PM CST
In this Aug. 28, 2012 file photo, award-winning chef Charlie Trotter is seen during an interview with The Associated Press at his restaurant in Chicago.   (AP Photo/Sitthixay Ditthavong, File)

(Newser) – Famed Chicago chef Charlie Trotter was found unresponsive in his home this morning and was pronounced dead at a local hospital, the Tribune reports. He was 54. In 2012, Trotter closed his landmark restaurant, Charlie Trotter's, after 25 years so he could focus on other pursuits that included pursuing a graduate degree in philosophy and political theory. A family friend says Trotter's son, Dylan, found his father unconscious and not breathing; a neighbor says Trotter's wife, Rochelle, ran outside "yelling hysterically."

Trotter was "an extreme father figure to me when it came to not just cooking but life and seeing things in a different way," says another well-known Chicago chef, Graham Elliot Bowles. "I just talked to him maybe two weeks ago and just can’t put into words just how saddened I am by all of this. It’s a huge loss, not just personally, but for the culinary world." (Read more Charlie Trotter stories.)

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