Gene Leonhardt, who became an instant internet legend after angrily defending his daughter from online critics, died this week of a heart attack. He was 53. Know Your Meme writes:
On August 14th, 2011, Jessi's mother posted a status update on her Facebook account claiming that her husband Gene Leonhardt passed away on August 11th, the same day her apology video was uploaded, due to a massive heart attack
A death notice was published in the Charleston Gazette.