Portland, OR -

Oregon's top food safety investigator, William Keene, died unexpectedly Sunday at the age of 56.

Family members told The Oregonian he went to a hospital two weeks ago with acute pancreatitis.

He was the senior epidemiologist for the Oregon Public Health Division where he tracked down numerous food poisoning outbreaks.

Keene grew up in Seattle and earned degrees from Yale and the University of California at Berkley.