Dedicated Be Well Philly readers will remember the Heart Attack Grill, the gimmicky Las Vegas restaurant that defies health sensibilities (and, well, all sensibilities) with offerings like the Quadruple Bypass Burger and triple butterfat milkshake. The chain is back in the headlines this week after its unofficial spokesman, John Alleman, suffered a heart attack in front of the restaurant and later died at a nearby hospital.
An article on the Las Vegas Sun’s website reports that Alleman, 52, was a fixture at the restaurant since it opened in October 2011: “[He] would stand outside its doors every day, coaxing customers in … When he wasn’t working security at an abandoned high-rise construction site on the Strip, Alleman could be found at the grill, talking with customers and eating a burger.” Alleman was never on the Grill’s payroll but appears as one of the caricature drawings on the restaurant’s wall, dubbed “Patient John.”
Alleman, a Pennsylvania native, was the second spokesman to die in the restaurant’s history. Last March, 29-year-old Blair River, who weighed 575 pounds, died of flu-related pneumonia. At least two of the restaurant’s patrons have suffered medical episodes—in one case, a full-blown heart attack—while on the premises.