Burt Shavitz Dead: Burt’s Bees Founder Dies At 80 From Respiratory Complications

The namesake and founder behind the eco-conscious line of beauty products, Burt’s Bees, died on Sunday of respiratory complications in Maine. He was 80 years old.

Known as “The Bee Man,” Burt Shavitz was the stoic face behind the line of skin-care products, most notably, Burt’s Bees Lip Balm.

Shavitz founded his company in 1984 with Roxanne Quimby, People reported. Quimby made candles from the unused produced by Shavitz’s beehives. After seven years of selling their wares at craft fairs, the pair’s lip balm hit the market.

The company announced his death on its website, where it referred to Shavitz as a “free-spirited Maine man.”

We remember him as a bearded, free-spirited Maine man, a beekeeper, a wisecracker, a lover of golden retrievers and his land.

Although People states the company did not list a cause of death, The Washington Post reports that the company cited respiratory complications as Shavitz’s cause of death in their announcement.

Shavitz was a simple man, portrayed as a reclusive hermit. He lived in the small town of Parkman in a tiny cabin without a television, telephone, or hot water heater. Although he preferred to live the life of a hermit, Shavitz traveled at times on behalf of his company to promote the products.

Two years ago, the documentary Burt’s Buzz was released, and in the film, Shavitz talks about his life on screen. Additionally, his photo appeared on the company’s hand salve.

Shavitz seemed to embrace the recluse lifestyle and had no arguments about being portrayed as a hermit. In the documentary he says, “A good day is when nobody shows up and you don’t have to go anywhere.”

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