86-years old mathematics genius and one of the greatest economists John F Nash has died in a car crash. His wife Alicia, who was with him in a cab, too succumbed in the crash in New Jersey. Dr. Nash is known for his commendable struggle and the overcoming of schizophrenia to become one of the most influential economist in the last half century. His wife Alicia will always be remembered as the one who stood by his thick and thin and made him battle schizophrenia.
He had won the Nobel Prize in economics in 1994 for his work in game theory, which offered insight into the dynamics of human rivalry. It is considered one of the most influential ideas of the 20th century. He was associated with Princeton University for many years, most recently serving as a senior research mathematician.
His life, story and struggles are best chronicled in a 2001 Hollywood film “A Beautiful Mind”. Star actor Russell Crowe, who portrayed Dr. Nash in “A Beautiful Mind” tweeted that he was “stunned” after hearing the news of the couple killed in a car crash.
“My heart goes out to John & Alicia & family. An amazing partnership. Beautiful minds, beautiful hearts” wrote Russel Crowe on a micro-blogging website Twitter.
The couple lived at Princeton Township and were returning home from an airport in a cab. According to New Jersey State Police, the crash took place around 4:30 pm (local time) on Sunday in Monroe. The driver of the cab had lost control while trying to pass another car and hit the guardrail and another vehicle. The driver who has injured is hospitalised as well.
John David Stier, Nash’s son with his first wife, said he learned of the death this morning. “It’s very upsetting,” he said.
Tributes started pouring from his alma matter as well. Christopher Eisgruber, President of Princeton University said, “John’s remarkable achievements inspired generations of mathematicians, economists and scientists who were influenced by his brilliant, ground-breaking work in game theory.
Giving a special mention of his longest-time friend and wife Alicia, Eisgruber added “the story of his life with Alicia moved millions of readers and moviegoers who marvelled at their courage in the face of daunting challenges”.
Just a few days ago, Dr. Nash had received a prize from the Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters in Oslo with New York University mathematician Louis Nirenberg.
Calling Nash a genius, Nirenberg in his tributes said, “Nash was a truly great mathematician and a kind of genius”.