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Amid controversy over gay marriage, Chick-fil-A public relations vice president dies suddenly

ASSOCIATED PRESS

ATLANTA -- The longtime spokesman for fast-food chain Chick-fil-A has died.

The Atlanta-based company said in a prepared statement that vice president for corporate public relations Donald A. Perry died Friday. The cause of death was not released by the company.

Perry worked at Chick-fil-A nearly 29 years.

The privately owned company known for putting faith ahead of profits by closing on Sundays sparked a new skirmish in the culture wars when president Dan Cathy recently took a public position against same-sex marriage. Cathy said the company is "guilty as charged" in support of what he called the biblical definition of the family unit.

Gay rights groups called for a boycott, a Muppets toy was pulled from kids' meals and politicians weighed in.

Christian conservatives, however, threw their support behind the company.

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