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Steve Jobs died of respiratory arrest, health official says

Apple co-founder Steve Jobs died Wednesday at home in Palo Alto, California.
Apple co-founder Steve Jobs died Wednesday at home in Palo Alto, California.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Apple employees will celebrate Steve Jobs' life on Oct. 19
  • Jobs died Wednesday
  • He co-founded Apple with Steve Wozniak
  • Jobs had battled cancer for years

(CNN) -- Apple co-founder Steve Jobs died of respiratory arrest brought on by a pancreatic tumor, a public health official said Monday.

Jobs died at 3 p.m. Wednesday at home in Palo Alto, California, said Amy Cornell of the Santa Clara County Public Health Department.

His death was announced Wednesday by Apple, the Silicon Valley company he founded with Steve Wozniak. Jobs was 56.

The hard-driving executive pioneered the concept of the personal computer and of navigating them by clicking onscreen images with a mouse.

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In more recent years, he introduced the iPod portable music player, the iPhone and the iPad tablet -- all of which changed how digital content was consumed.

Jobs' death, while dreaded by Apple's legions of fans, was not unexpected. He had battled cancer for years, took a medical leave from Apple in January and stepped down as chief executive in August because he could "no longer meet (his) duties and expectations."

On October 19, Apple employees will celebrate Jobs' life and contributions.

A company memo from Apple CEO Tim Cook said:

"Like many of you, I have experienced the saddest days of my lifetime and shed many tears during the past week. But I've found some comfort in the extraordinary number of tributes and condolences from people all over the world who were touched by Steve and his genius. And I've found comfort in both telling and listening to stories about Steve.

"Although many of our hearts are still heavy, we are planning a celebration of his life for Apple employees to take time to remember the incredible things Steve achieved in his life and the many ways he made our world a better place."

Jobs was buried Friday in Palo Alto.

CNN's Dan Simon and Greg Morrison contributed to this report.

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