PEOPLE previously reported that the entrepreneur died after sustaining injuries in a house fire while in Connecticut

By Ashley Boucher
November 30, 2020 06:14 PM
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Tony Hsieh died from complications of smoke inhalation, the Connecticut Office of the Chief Medical Examiner confirms to PEOPLE.

The former Zappos CEO's death was ruled an accident, the office confirms.

PEOPLE previously reported that Hsieh died at 46 on Friday after sustaining injuries in a house fire while visiting Connecticut. He was reportedly surrounded by family at the time of his death while hospitalized.

"Tony’s kindness and generosity touched the lives of everyone around him, and forever brightened the world," said a statement from DTP Companies, which Hsieh founded. "Delivering happiness was always his mantra, so instead of mourning his transition, we ask you to join us in celebrating his life."

Tony Hsieh

The house fire occurred in New London, Connecticut, and the cause of the blaze remains under investigation by the New London Fire Marshal, the Hartford Courant reported Monday. Hsieh was reportedly trapped in a storage room that filled with smoke after the fire started in the house's basement.

The fire marshal did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.

Tony Hsieh
| Credit: FilmMagic

Firefighters responded to a call around 3:30 a.m. on November 18 that someone was trapped inside the home, New London Fire Chief Thomas Curcio told the Courant. After he was rescued, Hsieh was first taken to Lawrence + Memorial Hospital and then later transferred to Connecticut Burn Center at Bridgeport Hospital, according to the Courant.

Hsieh's tragic death has resulted in an outpouring of tributes to the entrepreneur.

"The world has lost a tremendous visionary and an incredible human being," said Zappos CEO Kedar Deshpande in a statement on Friday. "We recognize that not only have we lost our inspiring former leader, but many of you have also lost a mentor and a friend. Tony played such an integral part in helping create the thriving Zappos business we have today, along with his passion for helping to support and drive our company culture."

Hsieh graduated from Harvard University in 1995 and joined Zappos four years later. He retired in August.