Todd Mills, the man who pioneered an idea that presaged Taco Bell’s Doritos Locos Taco, died last week after a battle with brain cancer. He was 41, USA Today reports.
The Doritos Locos Taco is a Taco Bell dish famous for featuring a Doritos-flavored hard shell. Upon its creation, it instantly became an Internet sensation — thanks in part to an aggressive viral marketing campaign.
Mills, who died on Thanksgiving, first wrote a letter to Frito-Lay suggesting a Doritos-based taco in 2009, according to USA Today, but the company didn’t bite.
Instead of giving up the dream, Mills started a campaign on Facebook to help bring his creation to life. Taco Bell later took interest, designing the special snack and inviting Mills to a taste test. The company eventually green-lighted the epicurean curiosity, eventually making more than $1 billion on the Doritos Locos Taco.
“Our thoughts and sympathies are with Todd’s family during this time,” Taco Bell said in a statement.