NEW YORK -- Former Dow Jones & Co. executive William Cox Jr. has died at age 82, according to The Wall Street Journal.The Journal report cited unnamed people close to the family. Cox was part of the Bancroft family that controlled Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal until they were sold to Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. ( NWSA) in 2007. The sale was contentious because the Journal had long been independent and members of the Bancroft family were divided about whether to sell or not. But eventually, News Corp. paid about $5 billion to acquire Dow Jones, which publishes the Journal. Cox was Midwestern regional sales manager at Dow Jones and worked for The Wall Street Journal in London. He became executive director of client-relations and kept that post until 1997, according to The Wall Street Journal. The reclusive Bancroft clan traces its association to Dow Jones back to 1902, when Boston newspaperman Clarence W. Barron bought control of the company founded 20 years earlier by Charles Dow, Edward Jones and Charles Bergstresser.