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The Rev. Billy Graham, prominent Christian evangelist, dead at 99.

The Rev. Billy Graham , the Christian evangelist whose worldwide crusades and role as adviser to decades of U.S. presidents made him one of the best known religious figures of his time, died Wednesday at age 99 at his home in Montreat, N.C, Todd Shearer of DeMoss Associates told Fox News.

Graham, who had been in ill health for a number of years, was regularly listed in polls as one of the “Ten Most Admired Men in the World.”

Shearer told Fox News that Graham died from “natural causes.”

His Christian crusades took him from the frenzy of Manhattan to isolated African villages and according to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association website, he preached to more people in live audiences than anyone else in history.

U.S. evangelist Billy Graham spoke in the East Berlin Gethsemane Church, center of last year's uprising on March 9, 1990. Graham was due to address a rally on Saturday in front of the old Reichstag parliament building at the wall in West Berlin.  REUTERS/Juergen Schwarz    BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE - GF2E4480MIT05

U.S. evangelist Billy Graham spoke in the East Berlin Gethsemane Church in 1990.  (Reuters)

The BGEA put his lifetime audience at nearly 215 million people in more than 185 countries and territories, with “hundreds of millions more” viewing him on television, video, film and webcasts.

“My one purpose in life,” he said, “is to help people find a personal relationship with God, which, I believe, comes through knowing Christ.”

FILE - In this June 26, 2005 file photo, the Rev. Billy Graham speaks on stage on the third and last day of his farewell American revival in the Queens borough of New York.  A spokesman said on Graham has died at his home in North Carolina at age 99. (AP Photo/Henny Ray Abrams)

In this June 26, 2005 file photo, the Rev. Billy Graham speaks on stage on the third and last day of his farewell American revival.  (AP)

Graham was last hospitalized in 2011 at Mission Hospital in Asheville, N.C. for what was described as “evaluation and treatment of his lungs.” He was also hospitalized that year due to pneumonia.

William Franklin Graham Jr. was born Nov. 7, 1918 and raised on a dairy farm in Charlotte, N.C.

At 15, he made his personal commitment to Christ at a revival meeting in Charlotte. After attending Bob Jones College and the Florida Bible Institute, Graham was ordained a Southern Baptist clergyman in 1939.

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