Gourmet Grill cleaner’s death brings to an end one of the industry’s biggest brands
A veteran of the food service industry who was one of two Gourmet grill cleaner operators to die in a crash that killed one person and injured another was pronounced dead Thursday.
Shirley Kwan, 48, died after crashing her Jeep into a tree in the northern California city of Larkspur on Thursday, the California Highway Patrol said.
She was pronounced deceased at the scene.
Kwan was one the two owners of Kwan & Co., which is owned by former restaurateur Michael R. Rupp, who also owns Rupp Restaurants, the company said.
The company had no immediate comment on the cause of the crash.
Kwon was the only owner of the company.
The other operator was a driver who was injured in the crash, said Brian A. Wiedefeld, a spokesman for the CHP.
A police officer, who was not named in the police report, was driving the Jeep when it went off the road, police said.
Kuan Yim, president of the California Restaurant Association, said the crash was a tragedy for the state and a loss for the restaurant industry.
“The loss of one of our members, one of America’s leading family owned companies, has shattered our community, but will have ripple effects throughout our industry,” Yim said.
“This is a loss to the community and to the business community.
We hope to see that community come together.”
In the past, the state’s restaurant industry has suffered a number of high-profile deaths, including in June 2015 when a female employee at the Los Angeles County Fairgrounds was killed by a car on a ramp.
The state also saw several fatal car crashes last year, including the July 4, 2016, death of a woman who was in a car accident on Interstate 405.