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Motivation guru Zig Ziglar dies at 86

By Alan Duke, CNN
updated 2:47 PM EST, Thu November 29, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Self-described "Undisputed King of Motivation" was known for his seminars
  • He wrote more than two dozen books on salesmanship and motivation
  • "Failure is a detour, not a dead-end street" is one of many famous Ziglar quotes

(CNN) -- Motivational speaker and author Zig Ziglar died Wednesday in Dallas "after a short bout with pneumonia," his spokesman said. He was 86.

The self-described "Undisputed King of Motivation" was known for his seminars, which grew into large gatherings held in packed arenas.

Ziglar wrote more than two dozen books on salesmanship and motivation over five decades.

He spread his message of positive attitude, motivation and success through stories punctuated with short quotes that became legendary among his followers, such as:

• "Failure is a detour, not a dead-end street."

• "Success is the maximum utilization of the ability that you have."

• "Of course motivation is not permanent. But then, neither is bathing; but it is something you should do on a regular basis."

After suffering injuries in a fall in 2007, Ziglar continued his tour schedule with fewer events and help from his daughter onstage.

He was born Hilary Hinton Ziglar in Coffee County, Alabama. His family moved to Yazoo City, Mississippi, and later to New York City.

In his autobiography, Ziglar described a challenging childhood that taught him to connect with people.

Ziglar was 'simply the best'

He began speaking in public as a salesman in the 1950s, although his professional speaking career did not start until the 1970s.

A collection of Ziglar quotes pulled from social media users is displayed at the top of this story. If you are unable to see the quotes, please click here.

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