OAK BROOK, Ill. — Fred L. Turner, the former McDonald’s chief executive who introduced the Happy Meal, Chicken McNugget and Egg McMuffin to the menu, died Monday, Jan. 7, from complications of pneumonia. He was 80.
“Fred was a true pioneer and shaped the quick-service restaurant industry. We will remember his leadership, passion and dedication to McDonald’s, our customers and our people,” said Andy McKenna, chairman of McDonald’s Board of Directors.
Turner became McDonald’s president and chief administrative officer in 1968 before being named president and CEO in 1974. He was elected chairman and CEO in 1977 and served in that capacity until 1987. He remained chairman of the Board until 1990 when he was named senior chairman. He continued in that role until 2004 when he retired and became honorary chairman.
Turner is credited with McDonald’s significant domestic and international expansion, the creation of McDonald’s Hamburger University and the introduction of breakfast items and offerings such as chicken nuggets.
Turner is survived by three daughters, Paula Turner, Patty Sue (Bob) Rhea, Teri Turner and eight grandchildren. Funeral arrangements are pending.