It’s a sad day for McDonalds fans—and Mountaineers—everywhere. Jim Delligatti, the inventor of the Big Mac, died Monday at his home outside Pittsburgh. He was 98.

But what many West Virginians may not know is the sandwich’s inventor had special ties to our state.

Delligatti was born in Uniontown, Pennsylvania, but graduated from Fairmont Senior High School in 1938.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Delligatti came up with the sandwich idea for his Uniontown store in 1965 and first served them in 1967. They quickly became a national sensation.

McDonalds

McDonalds

The original Big Mac went national in 1968 and sold for 45 cents. How times have changed!

Jim visited Fairmont in 2007 for a friend’s birthday.

He told the Times-West Virginian’s John Veasey he had fond memories of growing up there. He remembered well Slack’s Pool Room on Madison Street, the pecan rolls of Palace Restaurant, and Tony DeMarco’s hot dogs.

RIP Jim. Thank for the sandwiches and making us all proud.

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