Harry Morton’s family has revealed his cause of death was sudden cardiac death.
The Pink Taco restaurant founder, who came from a family of famous and successful restaurateurs, died Saturday after he was found unresponsive by a family member at his Beverly Hills home.
On Tuesday the Morton family shared a statement revealing that Morton suffered from coronary artery disease with a mildly enlarged heart and the cause of his death as sudden cardiac death.
‘We are devastated by the loss of our beloved son, brother, and friend. Harry was the brightest light in all our lives and his spirit will live on forever,’ a Morton family spokesperson shared with DailyMail.com, adding that the family is requesting privacy at this time.
‘Dr. Matthew Miller (MD), Deputy Medical examiner County of Los Angeles Department of Coroner, confirmed to the Morton family that Harry Morton had coronary artery disease with a mildly enlarged heart. The other study including a mircroscopy of the other organs is still being worked on,’ the statement revealed.
Harry Morton’s family has revealed his cause of death was sudden cardiac death in a statement on Tuesday. The Pink Taco founder was found dead in his Beverly Hills home on Saturday
Cardiothoracic surgeon Dr.Kathy E. Magliato, who is a friend of the Morton family, said that Harry had calcification in three main arteries and suffered sudden cardiac death, an unexpected death caused by loss of heart function.
A memorial service is being planned to celebrate his life in Beverly Hills this coming Saturday
A Morton family friend said ‘there were absolutely no drugs involved’ in Harry’s death.
The source added that his heart disease came as a complete surprise to the family, who knew him as a ‘very healthy guy’ who ran ‘marathons, triathlons and an Iron Man’ and trained for months cycling with friends.
‘They’re in shock. This was a very healthy, happy individual. This is so hard for everyone,’ the friend said.
The source said that the restauranteur’s nose surgery to fix a deviated septum was ‘months and months ago’ and was unrelated to his death. ‘The statement from the coroner is pretty clear that the deviated septum had nothing to do with it,’ the source said.
‘This is a serious tragedy of someone who was really, really loved. Harry Morton was a loved man. He was kind, he was humble. He was all about giving back to his community. He was very, very close to his family,’ the family friend told DailyMail.com.
‘Harry Morton was one of the most loved people in LA. I’ve known him my whole life.
‘People are deeply saddened. Harry was a loved human being. I’ve gotten over 350 text messages from people in shock and devastated. It’s heartbreaking.’
The friend added that the memorial service scheduled Saturday is ‘probably going to be super small and private.’
The cause of death comes days after it was revealed that Morton, a prominent socialite in Los Angeles circles, was hooked on the powerful hallucinogenic super-drug ayahuasca, which was once used and praised by his ex-girlfriend Lindsay Lohan.
Friends of the 38-year-old business owner have told DailyMail.com that Morton was a well-known drug user with a particular fondness of ayahuasca – a ‘psychedelic brew’ made from tropical vines and leaves from the Amazon jungle.
Actress Lohan, who dated Morton in 2006, credited the drug with helping her cope with a miscarriage, saying in 2014: ‘I did ayahuasca, it changed my life … [I let go of the] wreckage of my past.’
Ayahuasca is a ‘psychedelic brew’ made from tropical vines and leaves of the Amazon jungle and distorts brain waves to create a vivid ‘waking-dream’ state
A friend of Morton’s, speaking exclusively to DailyMail.com, said: ‘We’ve all been concerned over Harry’s use of ayahuasca for some time, he was hooked on the stuff.
‘He always thought it was safe and natural but he was definitely over using it.
‘It’s still too early to know exactly how Harry died, but because he was so young his friends and family fear it’s drug related – only time will tell.’
The friend added: ‘Harry’s sister died of a drug overdose so it would be an absolute tragedy if Harry went the same way.’
Harry’s half-sister, the model turned bounty hunter Domino Harvey, died aged 35 of an overdose of the painkiller drug fentanyl in 2005.
She had been found unconscious in a bathtub by her aide.
The hip Hollywood drug ayahuasca is prepared as a tea from a number of different plant species, some of which include the psychedelic chemical, dimethyltryptamine, or DMT, and it distorts brain waves to create a vivid ‘waking-dream’ state.
A friend of Morton’s, speaking exclusively to DailyMail.com, said: ‘We’ve all been concerned over Harry’s use of ayahuasca for some time, he was hooked on the stuff. He always thought it was safe and natural but he was definitely over using it.’ Pictured: Morton with his brother Matthew in 2014
The brew is popular with celebrities with the likes of Sting, Chelsea Handler and Lohan having sampled it and spoken out about their experience.
Despite its popularity, the potent drug was blamed for the untimely death of banking heir Matthew Mellon, the ex-husband of Jimmy Choo guru Tamara Mellon, in April 2018.
The 53-year-old billionaire died of a heart attack after taking ayahuasca in a Mexican rehab facility.
Morton is survived by both of his parents, Peter Morton and Paulene Stone.
It was also revealed by TMZ on Monday that he had surgery to repair a deviated septum weeks before he died. Morton had a procedure called septoplasty and reportedly didn’t complain of any complications.
It as a surgical procedure to straighten the bone and cartilage dividing the space between the nostrils to make it easier to breathe, according to the Mayo Clinic.
His ex Lohan paid tribute to Morton with a touching Instagram post.
She shared a black and white Instagram photo of them together at the Venice Film Festival with the caption: ‘Best friends. Best life.’
But friends of Morton, who has also dated Jennifer Aniston, Demi Moore, Britney Spears and Paris Hilton over the years, are less than impressed.
Lohan, who dated Morton in 2006, credited the drug with helping her cope with a miscarriage, saying: ‘I did ayahuasca, it changed my life … [I let go of the] wreckage of my past.’ She paid tribute to Morton, sharing a photo of them at the Venice Film Festival in 2006
Friends of Morton, who has also dated Jennifer Aniston, Demi Moore, Britney Spears and Paris Hilton over the years, are less than impressed with Lohan. The friend said: ‘Lohan is jumping on the band wagon to pay tribute to Harry when she represented a dark time in his life. It’s upsetting for those close to him’
The friend said: ‘Lohan is jumping on the band wagon to pay tribute to Harry when she represented a dark time in his life. It’s upsetting for those close to him.’
Harry founded the popular restaurant chain Pink Taco when he was just 18 years old, which is frequented by celebrity customers including comedian Russell Brand and actor Johnny Depp.
He came from a long line of famous restaurateurs. His father co-founded the Hard Rock Café in 1971 and his grandfather, Arnie, co-founded Morton’s Steakhouse in 1978.
On Sunday it emerged that Harry’s younger brother, Matthew, found him unresponsive in his Beverly Hills home, a source told People magazine.
No foul play is suspected.