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‘Father Of The Mustang’ Lee Iacocca Has Died At 94: Report

Photo by TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images

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Lee Iacocca, the American automobile executive best known for helping develop the Ford Mustang and saving Chrysler from bankruptcy, has died at 94, a family spokeswoman said.

Iacocca was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania, to Italian immigrants. His automotive career began in 1946, when he took a job as an engineer at Ford Motor Company. He managed the team that created Ford’s Mustang in 1964, according to The Washington Post.

BEVERLY HILLS , CA - OCTOBER 18: Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca attends the unveiling of the new Mercedes-Benz Maybach 57S at Mercedes Benz of Beverly Hills on October 18, 2005 in Beverly Hills, California. The 605 HP V12 twin-turbo 57S sports a pricetag of $360,000 and is custom built to order with options like a champagne refrigerator and dual 9.5" flat screen monitors. (Photo by Matthew Simmons/Getty Images)

Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca attends the unveiling of the new Mercedes-Benz Maybach 57S at Mercedes Benz of Beverly Hills on October 18, 2005 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Matthew Simmons/Getty Images)

He went on to become Ford’s CEO in 1970 before Henry Ford II reportedly fired Iacocca from his position after eight years. He later joined Chrysler in 1979, eventually becoming its CEO. Iacocca oversaw Chrysler’s emergence from bankruptcy, according to Fox 2.

His public profile increased after he starred in the television ads for Chrysler when he became known for his signature tagline, “If you can find a better car, buy it.” (RELATED: Top Nissan Exec Arrested For Hiding Millions From Financial Officers)

Former President Ronald Reagan appointed Iacocca as chairman of the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Centennial Commission, which oversaw fundraising for the restoration of the Statue of Liberty.

Iococca retired from Chrysler in 1992. He passed away from complications of Parkinson’s disease, a family spokeswoman said, according to the Los Angeles Times.

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