Former White Rabbit candy firm chairman killed by rock 'kicked by monkey'

Weng Mao, 67, was the chairman of the Guan Sheng Yuan Group, famous for its White Rabbit milk candy.
Weng Mao, 67, was the chairman of the Guan Sheng Yuan Group, famous for its White Rabbit milk candy.PHOTO: FACEBOOK/CCTVNEWS

A former chairman of one of China's most iconic sweet brands died after being hit by a rock that was kicked by a monkey while touring a scenic spot in Henan.

Weng Mao, 67, who used to head the Guan Sheng Yuan Group, famous for its White Rabbit milk candy, was taken to a local hospital but died there later during treatment on Tuesday (April 19), the South China Morning Post reported.

Employees of the scenic sight confirmed after inspection they had discovered that monkeys had kicked off the rocks, according to a police statement sent to Sina.com.cn.

The news went viral on social media in China because of Weng's association to the White Rabbit brand - or Da Baitu as it is known locally - which has been popular since the 1960s.

Weng reportedly joined Guan Sheng Yuan as a general manager in the early 1990s, and left from the post of chairman at the firm in 2010.

Local media reported that Weng had been enjoying a happy and healthy retirement, and had taken up photography as a hobby.

Yuntai Mountain, where the unusual incident took place, is home to wild monkeys who are known to come down from the clifftops to take food and other belongings from tourists.

A statement released to Chinese media on Friday by the Yuntai Mountain Management Bureau confirmed Weng's bizarre death.

It read: "The tourist, Weng Mao, was hit by a stone kicked down by a monkey near the pavilion when he was touring Tanpu Valley."

The statement added that staff had given Weng first-aid treatment before taking him to the People's Hospital in Xiuwu County.

It said he died in the hospital during treatment due to the seriousness of his injuries.