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Texas oilman George P. Mitchell dies

Published On: Jul 26 2013 03:01:48 PM CDT

HOUSTON (AP) -

Billionaire Texas oilman, developer and philanthropist George P. Mitchell has died at his home in Galveston.

He was 94.

Mitchell was the son of Greek immigrants and became one of the wealthiest men in the U.S. He's considered the father of hydraulic fracking to recover natural gas from shale deposits, pioneering the now common process that's led to an energy boom.

Mitchell's family announced his death Friday on the family foundation website.

The posting said he died of natural causes while surrounded by family.

Mitchell was born in Galveston, graduated at the top of his class at Texas A&M University in 1940 and had been one of the school's top benefactors.

His wife, Cynthia, died in 2009. They had 10 children.