Charlie Trotter Dead at 54

ABC's Chicago affiliate has reported that Charlie Trotter has died today at the age of 54.

Though details of his death have not yet been released, ABC's Eyewitness News 7 has reported that "Trotter was found unconscious in his Lincoln Park home and transported to Northwestern Memorial Hospital on Tuesday at 10:45 a.m., where he died." An autopsy is scheduled for Wednesday.

See also: SoBeWFF: Charlie Trotter Tribute Dinner

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has released a statement regarding Chicago's best-loved chef:

"Charlie Trotter changed Chicago's restaurant scene forever and played a leading role in elevating the city to the culinary capital it is today. Charlie's personality mirrored his cooking - bold, inventive and always memorable. Charlie Trotter will be remembered for serving the finest food and his generous philanthropy, and he will always have a seat at the table among Chicago's legendary figures."

Trotter never graduated from any fancy culinary school. Instead, he learned his trade working under some of the best chefs in the nation, including Norman Van Aken.

Trotter opened his famed restaurant, Charlie Trotter's, in 1987 and won multiple James Beard Awards, including humanitarian of the year. In 2012, Trotter was honored at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival's annual tribute dinner. Trotter closed his restaurant in September 2012 with the intention of continuing his education.

Celebrity chefs have been taking to Twitter to share their disbelief -- and grief:

Follow Laine Doss on Twitter @LaineDoss and Facebook.

Follow Short Order on Facebook, Twitter @Short_Order, and Instagram @ShortOrder.

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