John Alleman, the unofficial spokesman for the Heart Attack Grill in Las Vegas, has died of a heart attack. He was 52, according to the Las Vegas Sun.
For the past year and a half, Alleman would stand outside of the restaurant and try to encourage people to come inside. Owner Jon Basso didn't actually pay him for this, but would occasionally give him some free food.
“I told him if you keep eating like this, it’s going to kill ya,” Basso told the Las Vegas Sun.
The Heart Attack Grill is known for its over-the-top burger creations such as the quadruple bypass burger, which holds the Guinness World Record for "most calorific burger."
The restaurant posted a message on its Facebook page explaining how much Alleman meant to customers and employees:
For the past 18 months if you happen to walk by the Heart Attack Grill you were probably approached by our new spokesman John Alleman. So colorful was John's sales pitch that we placed him on the cover of our menu. He was so popular with the customers that last summer we gave him his own "Patient John" clothing line on our website. John truly loved HAG and would spend hours every day getting the word out to anyone who would listen.
Alleman's heart attack is the most recent health incident surrounding the restaurant. In 2011, another Heart Attack Grill spokesman died at age 29. The following year, a customer suffered a heart attack while eating a triple bypass burger. Two months after that, a customer collapsed while eating a double bypass burger.
Last year, Basso gave a candid interview to Eater Vegas. He calls his burger concept "absolutely honest" and explains "I don't tell anyone to come to the Heart Attack Grill more often than once a month. I say it right in the door, 'Caution this establishment is bad for your health.'"