Fitness International, LLC, the parent company of LA Fitness, announces that its co-founder, president, and co-CEO, Louis Welch, passed away after a two-year battle with cancer.

Fitness International said in a statement, “We are deeply saddened to announce the passing of Louis Welch, co-founder, president, and co-CEO of Fitness International, LLC, after a two-year battle with cancer. He was surrounded by his family and loved ones.

“Louis’ impact on the company and the health club industry cannot be overstated. He co-founded LA Fitness in Southern California in 1984. Under Chinyol Yi and Louis’ tremendous leadership, the company has grown from a single location to one of the country’s largest fitness club chains, with over 700 locations across the United States and Canada and four brands. As a driving force behind the LA Fitness signature design model and the company’s commitment to enhancing the physical and emotional well-being of its members in each community it serves, Louis’ almost 40 years of passionate dedication to Fitness International, LLC, has shaped it into the industry leader it is today.

“Chinyol Yi, executive chairman, and the existing executive team are well positioned to continue driving Fitness International, LLC‘s strategy and business forward.”

Fitness International has over 700 locations across 27 U.S. states and Canada, operating the brand names LA Fitness, Esporta Fitness, City Sports Club, and Club Studio.

Photo courtesy LA Fitness