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Chick-fil-A spokesman dies of heart attack

Donald A. Perry's death comes as chain is in middle of firestorm over anti-gay position

With Chick-fil-A in the middle of a firestorm in the US debate over gay marriage, the fast food chain's spokesman has died of a heart attack.

'We are saddened to report the news to you that our dear friend Don Perry, vice president of public relations, passed away suddenly this morning,' Ross Cathy, the owner of the Midland, GA Chick-fil-A and family member of company CEO, Dan Cathy, tells News 3.

'Don was a member of our Chick-fil-A family for nearly 29 years,' Cathy added.  'He was a well-respected and well-liked media executive in the Atlanta and University of Georgia communities, and we will all miss him.'

The company has been engaged in a series of public relations challenges after Chief Operating Officer Dan Cathy said in an interview with the Baptist Press that the company is 'guilty as charged' when it comes to its opposition to gay marriage.

The fallout has included the Jim Henson Company cutting ties with the company and political leaders in Boston, Philadelphia and Chicago slamming the company.

Chick-fil-A in based in Georgia and has 1,614 restaurants in 39 states and the District of Columbia

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