McDonald's franchisee who created Big Mac dies


It’s the end of an era, and the beginning of a new one for one of the world’s most famous sandwiches.   

The Pittsburgh-area McDonald's franchisee who created the Big Mac nearly 50 years ago died Monday. Michael "Jim" Delligatti was 98.

>> Read more trending stories  

McDonald's spokeswoman Kerry Ford confirmed that Delligatti died at his Fox Chapel home surrounded by his family.

His death comes after the recent announcement that McDonald’s is introducing two new versions of his famous burger.   

Delligatti was one of the original McDonald’s franchisees and operated several restaurants in the Pittsburgh area.

His franchise was based in Uniontown when he invented the chain's signature burger in 1967. The classic Big Mac includes a pair of beef patties, “special sauce,” lettuce, cheese, onions and pickles on a sesame seed bun, with an extra bun segment sandwiched between the two patties.  

Delligatti 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 restaurants. The sandwich went national in 1968.  

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Nation & World

Missing airman found 40 years later living double life after desertion
Missing airman found 40 years later living double life after desertion

A serviceman who disappeared 40 years ago from an Air Force Base in North Dakota was found living a double life in Seminole County, investigators said. Jeffrey Michels, 64, of Sanford, is in the custody of the United States Air Force after he was arrested last Thursday on charges of desertion. According to the National Missing and Unidentified Persons...
Warrant alleges mother of two put toddlers in oven, turned it on
Warrant alleges mother of two put toddlers in oven, turned it on

A 24-year-old mother of four is accused of killing her two youngest sons “by placing them in an oven and turning it on,” according to an arrest warrant obtained Monday by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. An official autopsy is pending. Fulton County jail officials said Lamora Williams waived her first appearance in court Monday on felony...
Ghosts in the attic and basement haunt family home in Ohio
Ghosts in the attic and basement haunt family home in Ohio

A family in southern Ohio told first responders over the weekend they have a ghost living in their attic and in their basement. Emergency teams were called to the home in Cambridge, Ohio, early Sunday to help a woman who had collapsed on her front porch, according to the Times Reporter. But when they arrived, the woman refused medical assistance, instead...
75 percent of workplace harassment victims who complain face retaliation, study finds
75 percent of workplace harassment victims who complain face retaliation, study finds

A comprehensive study conducted in 2016  by the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission uncovered some troubling truths about harassment in the workplace. In a preface to the report, EEOC co-chairs wrote the number of harassment complaints the team receives every year is still striking 30 years after the U.S...
Monument battle raging in Texas, threatening to reshape how people remember the Alamo
Monument battle raging in Texas, threatening to reshape how people remember the Alamo

A new battle is raging at the Alamo — between protesters and a master plan committee that is determined to reshape the battleground to fit their vision. Outside the Alamo gates, a 60-foot monument called a cenotaph memorializes those who fought in Texas’ most notable battle. The monument includes individual carvings of those...
More Stories