MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Montgomery businessman Greg Calhoun died in Los Angeles Thursday, according to his family. He was 66-years-old.
According to his daughter ShaKenya Calhoun, he lost consciousness and never woke up. She wrote in a Facebook post that her family is truly grateful for the time they had with Calhoun, and they will cherish the memories of him forever.
Calhoun began his career as a grocery store bagger before he founded Calhoun Enterprises, Inc., a supermarket company, in 1984 and served as its president and CEO. He was the owner of Calhoun Foods, a Montgomery-based grocery store that served the community for more than 30 years.
The last Montgomery branch closed in 2015; at one point, seven stores were open in the capital city.
Calhoun also founded the Greg Calhoun Foundation, which hosted a golf tournament for many years that brought in hundreds of thousands of dollars for the Sickle Cell Foundation.
Calhoun also partnered with entertainer Steve Harvey on a number of projects, including Alabama State University’s Turkey Day Classic, which they helped promote until 2017. The pair also met with President Donald Trump in 2017 to discuss creating jobs for the American people.
Calhoun was involved in business ventures with Magic Johnson and had connections with Michael Jackson and Prince.
Calhoun was 66 when he died. We’ve reached out to friends and business associates of Calhoun for reaction to his passing.
Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange issued this statement:
“Greg Calhoun’s legacy will inspire future business leaders in Montgomery. He brought jobs and hope to Montgomerians by building an operation from the ground up and catering to the needs of the community. Our thoughts are with his family today as we say goodbye to one of Montgomery’s own.”
Alabama State University President Dr. Quinton Ross, Jr. also issued a statement on Calhoun’s passing, saying:
“The Alabama State University family is saddened to learn of the loss today of one of Montgomery’s most prominent business leaders and philanthropists and a great friend to the community and to Alabama State University, Greg Calhoun. Mr. Calhoun rose from humble beginnings to become one of Alabama’s most successful business people, whose impact reached local, national and international levels. We offer our condolences to the Calhoun family and pray that God’s peace will be with them during this time.”
Judge Charles Price appeared on WSFA 12 News Alabama Live! Thursday morning to talk about his close friendship with Calhoun. Price said their families go back for years, and he knew Calhoun through businesses, making an effort to go by his grocery stores to support him. He called Calhoun a very hard worker, who came from humble backgrounds, and he said he was a “person to meet."
“I considered and called him one of my closest friends,” he said.
Price said he’ll miss Calhoun’s contributions to the city, praising him as always community oriented.
“He will be truly missed as a mainstay in Montgomery,” he said.