Cause of Death for Zappos Visionary Revealed

Tony Hsieh died of smoke inhalation
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 1, 2020 1:02 AM CST
Cause of Death for Zappos Visionary Revealed
In this Sept. 30, 2013, file photo, Tony Hsieh speaks during a Grand Rapids Economic Club luncheon in Grand Rapids, Mich.   (Cory Morse/The Grand Rapids Press via AP, File)

The cause of death for former Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, who died Friday at age 46, was revealed by the medical examiner's office Monday. Hsieh, who was hospitalized after a Connecticut house fire Nov. 18 and never recovered, died from complications of smoke inhalation, the Hartford Courant reports. His death was ruled accidental. Hsieh was visiting the state at the time, People reports, and was reportedly with his brother.

When firefighters arrived, people at the home reported Hsieh was trapped in a storage area of the home; firefighters forced their way in to get him out. The cause of the fire, which started in the basement, is under investigation. Longtime Zappos employee and close Hsieh associate Rachael Brown owns the waterfront home, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports; she has lived in Vegas, where Zappos is headquartered, and has ties to the arts community there, but is a native of Connecticut. She purchased the home in August. (More Tony Hsieh stories.)

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