News

Pennsylvania McDonald's franchisee who created Big Mac dies

Written by The Associated Press | Nov 30, 2016 12:11 PM
big_mac_delligatti.jpg

FILE PHOTO: In this Aug. 21, 2008, file photo, Big Mac creator Michael "Jim" Delligatti attends his 90th birthday party in Canonsburg, Pa. Delligatti, the Pittsburgh-area McDonald's franchisee who created the Big Mac in 1967, has died. He was 98. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

(Pittsburgh) -- The Pittsburgh-area McDonald's franchisee who created the Big Mac nearly 50 years ago has died.

Michael "Jim" Delligatti was 98.

McDonald's spokeswoman Kerry Ford confirmed that Delligatti died at home surrounded by his family on Monday night.

Delligatti's franchise was based in Uniontown when he invented the chain's signature burger with two all-beef patties, "special sauce," lettuce, cheese, pickles and onions on a sesame seed bun.

He told The Associated Press in 2006 that Oak Brook, Illinois-based McDonald's resisted the idea at first because its simple lineup of hamburgers, cheeseburgers, fries and shakes was selling well.

But Delligatti wanted to offer a bigger burger and it went over so well it spread to the rest of Delligatti's 47 stores, then went national in 1968.

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