Princeton University math professor John Forbes Nash Jr. and his wife, Alicia Nash, died in a car crash on the New Jersey Turnpike yesterday, police have confirmed.
John Nash was 86. Alicia Nash was 82. The couple lived in the Princeton Junction area of West Windsor.
State police said the taxi John and Alicia Nash were passengers in was heading south on the New Jersey Turnpike in Monroe Township when the driver lost control around 4:30 p.m. Saturday after trying to pass another car. The taxi then crashed into a guard rail. The Nashes were ejected from the vehicle. The driver will not be charged, according to the Middlesex County prosecutor’s office.
The Nashes were returning from a trip to Norway, where John Nash received the 2015 Abel Prize for Mathematics last week.
A native of Bluefield, West Virginia, Nash received his doctorate in mathematics from Princeton in 1950 and his graduate and bachelor’s degrees from Carnegie Institute of Technology (now Carnegie Mellon University) in 1948. He won the Nobel Prize for Economic Sciences in 1994 and joined the Princeton mathematics department in 1995. His honors include the American Mathematical Society’s 1999 Leroy P. Steele Prize for Seminal Contribution to Research and the 1978 John von Neumann Theory Prize. Nash held membership in the National Academy of Sciences and in 2012 was an inaugural fellow of the American Mathematical Society.
Nash’s mathematical genius and his schizophrenia were chronicled in the Pulitzer Prize-nominated book “A Beautiful Mind,” which was adapted into a movie starring Russell Crowe.