Henry “Nacho” Laun, a veteran presence on the reality show Wahlburgers and a very close friend of actor Mark Wahlberg, died on Tuesday from unknown causes.
He was 54 years old.
According to TMZ, Laun passed away at a Massachusetts hospital, about two weeks after being found unresponsive inside of his car.
Laun had reportedly been on a roap trip from Boston to Cape Cod in mid-May when he was discovered unconscious in his vehicle at a gas station.
At this time, it remains unknown exactly what caused the medical emergency, but Laun’s condition did not improve on his way to the hospital…. where he was quickly placed on life support.
At various points over the last few days, Laun showed signs of life. He gave his loved ones some hope.
Alas, Nacho eventually took a turn for the worse and never recovered.
Nacho was a childhood friend of the Wahlberg brothers and often appeared on their reality A&E reality show.
Having met Mark Wahlberg after moving to Dorchester in the 1980s — and later challenging the rapper-turned-actor to a fight — Laun grew into a fan favorite for never (ever!) shying away from an eating challenge.
Since befriending Wahlberg, Laun remained part of Mark’s entourage, occasionally being hired as a driver or additional security on film sets.
Sticking to his mantra “Cash is King” on Wahlbergers Nacho would eat anything for the right price — including whole lobsters in the shell, golf divots, sour milk, and pint-sized bottles of hot sauce to name a few.
His passing comes just over a month since the Wahlberg’s mother, Alma, also died.
She had appeared occasionally on the A&E same series “working as a greeter and hostess at her sons’ restaurants where she shares her infectious laugh and sense of humor with everyone who comes to dine,” according to the show’s website.
Announcing her death, Mark shared a photo of his mother on Instagram with the caption:
“My angel. Rest in peace.”
Donnie Wahlberg shared a video compilation of fond memories with his mom, including footage of her rollerblading and being honored in a speech at a black-tie event.
“My mom Alma’s joy for life, love and people — combined with a pride in her humble beginnings and refusal to forget where she came from — undoubtedly shaped me into the man that I am,” he wrote as a message at the time, concluding:
“I’ve often said, if you like anything about me, I got it from Alma. I say that, because it’s true.”
“She was, without a doubt, the most loving human being I’ve ever known. I love you, miss you, thank you, and will celebrate you, today and always.”
“Forever — your Baby Donnie.”
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