John Forbes Nash, Jr., the famed Nobel Prize-winning mathematician and subject of Oscar-winning film A Beautiful Mind, as well as his wife Alicia, were killed in a car crash on the New Jersey turnpike yesterday afternoon (May 23, 2015).
Russell Crowe portrayed Dr. Nash in A Beautiful Mind, which focused on his life story as a mathematical genius and his battle with schizophrenia.
Crowe tweeted his heartbreak and condolences:
Stunned…my heart goes out to John & Alicia & family. An amazing partnership. Beautiful minds, beautiful hearts. https://t.co/XF4V9MBwU4
— Russell Crowe (@russellcrowe) May 24, 2015
The couple were in Norway last week where Nash was receiving a top mathematics award.
— Philippe Pajot (@philpaj) May 19, 2015
They were traveling home from Newark airport via taxi when the crash occurred around 4:30 p.m.
NJ.com reports that according to State Police Sgt. Gregory Williams, they were heading southbound in the left lane of the New Jersey Turnpike when their driver lost control of the car, crashing into the guard rail as he tried to pass a Chrysler in the center lane.
Williams said the Nashes were ejected from the car, and it didn’t appear that they were wearing seat belts. The driver was hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries. Dr. Nash was 86, and Alicia was 82.
Nash revolutionized the mathematical field of game theory and received the 1994 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences before becoming a Senior Research Mathematician at Princeton University. Both Dr. Nash and Alicia were mental health advocates.
The New York Times notes, “Dr. Nash was widely regarded as one of the great mathematicians of the 20th century, known for the originality of his thinking and for his fearlessness in wrestling down problems so difficult few others dared tackle them. A one-sentence letter written in support of his application to Princeton’s doctoral program in math said simply, ‘This man is a genius.’ ”
RIP John and Alicia Nash, and our condolences go out to his family.