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James ‘Buster’ Corley’s Apparent Suicide Caused his Death


The shocking news of Dave & Buster’s co-founder James Corley’s suicide was revealed on January 4, 2023. He died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in his home near White Rock Lake on Monday.

A rep for D&B confirmed Corley’s death, saying that Corley will be remembered as “an innovative and creative force” with a “pioneering spirit.”

James “Buster” Corley died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Dallas, local ABC affiliate WFAA reported. Dallas police found him after he allegedly shot himself in his home near White Rock Lake.

James 'Buster' Corley's Suicide Caused his Death.

According to reports, he was rushed to an area hospital, where he died, police told the station. Both Corley’s family and Dave & Buster’s confirmed the devastating news.

His daughter, Kate Corley, told the local station that her dad hadn’t been the same after suffering a stroke recently. “Buster Corley had a stroke four months ago that caused severe damage to the communication and personality part of his brain. The family asks for privacy during this time,” she said in a statement to the station.

Corley founded the successful chain with David “Dave” Corriveau after they teamed up to open the first location in Dallas in 1982.

James and David had owned and operated businesses — Corley a restaurant and Corriveau an arcade — doors down from each other in the late 1970s.

The two noticed they usually shared customers looking to make a day of eating out and playing games and came up with the idea to build one establishment with both attractions.

Their thought, Corley recalled, was “What we need to do is we need to put these two places together, put them on a bigger scale, put them in a bigger market, and launch this thing.”

In December 1982, the business partners joined together and finalized their idea.— opening the first Dave & Buster‘s in Dallas’ “Restaurant Row.”

They famously flipped a coin to decide whose name would go first, with David winning the coin toss, according to the company history.

Though Corriveau and Corley started as business partners, they two “along the way became best friends” and godfathers to each other’s children, Corley said in a 2020 interview on the podcast “Pardon My Take.”

Their company has since opened more than 140 locations across the country. Corley outlived Corriveau, who passed away at age 63 in 2015.

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Shocking Details of James Corley’s Suicide at 72

Local ABC affiliate WFAA confirmed James Corley’s suicide at the age of 72. The police reported that they responded to a report of a shooting at a home in the 6600 block of Yosemite Lane and that the man who was shot passed away at a hospital after suffering “an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.”

The authorities did not identify the man, but Corley lived at an address on the block. In a statement to the Dallas television station WFAA, her daughter confirmed the death and said he had suffered a stroke about four months ago “that caused severe damage to the communication and personality part of his brain.”

A spokesperson for the company, which James and David sold years ago, remembered Corley for “his easy laugh” and “deep care” for those who worked for him.

James Corley's suicide at the age of 72.

The Dave & Buster’s representative said in a statement to WFAA: “His pioneering spirit and steadfast belief that ‘everybody is somebody’ set the foundation for bringing food and games to millions of Dave & Buster’s guests over the past 40 years.”

They added: “Buster’s passion for hospitality, his demand for excellence, and the deep care he had for his team members were unparalleled.”

A Dave & Buster’s spokesperson said: “Our hearts go out to his family at this difficult time and while we will miss his wise counsel and his easy laugh, the legacy he and Dave built endures.”

“RIP. James Corley never got his due after Dave and Buster ousted him early in the company’s history and stripped his name from all the locations,” Jacob Shamsian tweeted.

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