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Sep 17, 2010 7:10 PM by Sharon Knight

MCI founder dies

JOLIET, Ill. (AP) - John "Jack" Goeken (GOH'-ken), founder of telecom giant MCI, has died after a long battle with cancer. He was 80.

The Goeken Group Corp., a company he founded in Chicago's suburbs after MCI, says Goeken died Thursday in his hometown of Joliet, Illinois.

Goeken is widely viewed as the father of air-to-ground telephone communication.

As a founder of MCI and Airfone Inc., he sought to make communication possible anywhere people go - an idea that revolutionized the telecommunications industry.

He also won a reputation as "Jack the Giant Killer," because of his fervor for busting up communications monopolies like AT&T.

Goeken is survived by his wife of 59 years, Mona Lisa Goeken, two children, seven grandchildren and two sisters.

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