Millard Fuller, the founder of Habitat for Humanity and The Fuller Center for Housing, died early this morning after a brief illness.

Millard Fuller, the founder ofHabitat for HumanityandThe Fuller Center for Housing, which together have built more than 200,000 houses for the poor around the world, died early Tuesday morning. The cause of death was not immediately known.

Fuller, 74, was complaining of chest pains, headache and difficulty swallowing, according to his wife, Linda. The couple was to have celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in August with a 100-house "blitz build" across the globe, she said.

"We'll probably go ahead with the 'blitz build.' Millard would not want people to mourn his death," she said. "He would be more interested in having people put on a tool belt and build a house for people in need."

One of Habitat's highest-profile volunteers, former President Jimmy Carter, called Fuller "one of the most extraordinary people I have ever known.

"He used his remarkable gifts as an entrepreneur for the benefit of millions of needy people around the world by providing them with decent housing," Carter said in a statement. "As the founder of Habitat for Humanity and later the Fuller Center, he was an inspiration to me, other members of our family and an untold number of volunteers who worked side-by-side under his leadership."

Source: Associated Press