COSTA MESA (CBSLA.com) — Paul Crouch, a renowned televangelist who founded Trinity Broadcasting Network, died Saturday at 79, according to the network's website.
The son of two missionaries moved to Orange County, where he parlayed an obscure TV station into what's now the largest Christian TV network. TBN now operates 84 satellite channels worldwide in multiple languages.
Crouch was the face of TBN's flagship program, "Praise the Lord," and an on-air personality for 40 years.
The televangelist and his family drew criticism and made headlines for their opulent lifestyle and big paychecks.
TBN revealed earlier this year that Crouch had been suffering from heart problems for more than a year, and had a pacemaker installed, the Christian Post newspaper reported. He was hospitalized Oct. 22 at Dallas, and flown home to California in early November.
(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)
for more features.