Humboldt Beacon (http://www.humboldtbeacon.com)

Taco Bell designer and ex-president Robert McKay dies at 86


Friday, October 6, 2017

TUSTIN, Calif. (AP) Robert L. McKay, who designed the first Taco Bell restaurant and with founder Glenn Bell turned it from a quirky food stand into a fast-food empire, has died. He was 86.

His son, Rob McKay, says McKay died last week from cancer.

Bell opened his first Taco Bell in Downey, California in 1962, selling hard-shell tacos and other Mexican-inspired fast food.

McKay was an architect and designed the Spanish-style arched and tiled building that became the chain's signature look.

McKay eventually became president of Taco Bell, which had some 900 restaurants when it was sold to PepsiCo in 1978.

He went on to finance other businesses that invested in technology, consumer products, real estate and banking.