Andrew Burkle, son of billionaire entrepreneur Ronald Burkle was found dead inside his home in Beverly Hills on January 6, as reported by People. He was 26 years old, according to the Associated Press.
The family put out an official statement after authorities confirmed Andrew was deceased. “It is with the deepest regret and sadness that we announce the death of Andrew C. Burkle on January 6, 2020, in Beverly Hills, California. He is deeply loved by his family and friends and will be greatly missed. Andrew was known as a young man full of life and entrepreneurial energy. Everyone he met commented on his humble demeanor and hard work.”
The statement did not reveal the cause or details of Andrew’s death. “While the family appreciates the outpouring of love and support, they ask that the privacy of the family be respected during this difficult time. There are no further details at this time,” the statement continued.
Burkle spent the recent Christmas holiday with his family, which he documented on his Instagram. His account was made private soon following the news of his death. Ronald Burkle, whose estimated net worth according to Forbes is $1.5 billion, is long divorced from Andrew Burkle’s mother, Janet Steeper, with whom he shares three children.
A spokesman from the Beverly Hill Police said they received a phone call about an “unconscious male on the 100 block of Spalding Drive.” When they arrived on the scene, “first responders determined the male was deceased.” Burkle’s home is located across the street from The Beverly Hilton hotel, where the 2020 Golden Globes ceremony was held the night before.
A source told People that Burkle is believed to have died early Monday in his apartment. His father, Ronald, 67, rushed to his son’s place while the police were still on the scene. Burkle is survived by his mother, father, and two siblings, John and Carrie.
Here’s what you need to know about Andrew Burkle:
1. Burkle Was A Movie Producer
Burkle shared a production company with business partner Andrew Alter called In Good Company Films. According to his IMDB profile, he was an associate producer for the 2019 comedy Airplane Mode, which starred Jake Paul, Chloe Bridges, Nick Swardson and Amanda Cerny.
2. Burkle Was a Huge Fan Of The Pittsburgh Penguins, An NHL Team For Which His Father Is Part Owner
When the Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup in 2017, Burkle was on the ice next to his father as the team received the championship trophy. Ronald became part owner of the franchise in 1999 and helped buy the team out of bankruptcy. Since then, the Penguins have won three Stanley Cup Championships.
Before Burkle’s Instagram page was made private following the news of his passing, he shared a photo of the celebration with a caption honoring his dad on Father’s Day.
He wrote, “It’s hard to find words to describe my dad, but here goes. He is one of the smartest people in the world, he’s kind, loving, and incredibly generous. For those of you that know him you already know what I’m talking about. And for those of you that don’t, I hope you have someone in your life that has had the same impact on your life as he has on mine. I wouldn’t be the man I am today without his guidance and I will always cherish that.”
3. Following A Nasty Public Divorce, Burkle’s Mother Is Remarried to Larry Duitsman
Janet Steeper is now happily married to Larry Duitsman, writing in a Facebook comment, “If I could have wished for a guy who was perfect for me, and I did, it’d be Larry. He’s amazing! Super happy!” But things were tumultuous during her drawn out divorce from Burkle’s father.
In 2006, a Los Angeles court unsealed the divorce documents between Steeper and Ronald Burkle, which Burkle had tried to keep private for three years. The documents included allegations made by their daughter, Carrie, that her father told her his security staff had “pictures and videos” of Steeper having sex with her boyfriend. Carrie said he wanted to show her and her brother John the tape but changed his mind.
However, in a letter to The Los Angeles Times, Burkle’s attorney, Patricia L. Glaser, disputed the allegations. She said, “Mr. Burkle never told his daughter any such thing. There are no such videotapes. There was no such eavesdropping. This is not true.”
Steeper tried to get a restraining order against Ronald in 2003, which was denied. She accused him of spying on her and their young son, Andrew Burkle. Steeper also claimed to be defruaded when she signed their 1997 post-marital agreement, which limited her divorce settlement to an estimated $40 million. Those claims were rejected by a California appellate court.
The former couple’s multiple homes and vehicles were listed in the documents. In addition to their six homes, Steeper said, “At Greenacres alone, we had (at the same time) two Porsches, one Ferrari, two Mercedes, and two hybrid electric-gasoline-powered cars,” and a private 757 jet, which Ronald used to fly himself and Andrew Burkle, along with President Bill Clinton and his family, to South Africa in 2003 for Nelson Mandela’s birthday celebration.
4. Burkle’s Father Got His Start Working At Age 13 At His Father’s Grocery Store
Before founding Yucaipa Companies, a private equity firm, in 1986, Ronald Burkle worked at Stater Bros. grocery store in California, where his father, Joseph, was the manager. After dropping out of California State Polytechnic University, Ronald Burkle started investing and flipping grocery stores, and eventually became the vice president of Stater Bros.’s parent company, Petrolane.
Through Yucaipa, he started buying and selling major supermarket chains like Fred Meyer, Ralph’s, Jurgensen’s and more. Ronald Burkle was in headlines in April 2019 as he looked to purchase the National Enquirer, a move that seemed odd to many considering he’s a major Democratic party donor, and the acquisition would be widely seen as a move to support Donald Trump.
The California billionaire is already an investor in AirBnB, Uber, Foursquare, SoundCloud and SeatGeek.
5. Andrew Burkle’s Brother John Helped Celebrate His Birthday On December 2
John Burkle, whose Instagram recently documented celebrating his late brother’s birthday with a few rounds around the racetrack, is married with two kids of his own. John captioned the series of photos, “Sometimes we slide cars around tracks and try to look really cool doing it. Great way to celebrate my bro’s Birthday. Thanks @a_burkle.”