John F. Nash Jr. was born June 13, 1928, in Bluefield, West Virginia. At age 22, he published his influential thesis “Non-cooperative Games” in the journal Annals of Mathematics. He joined the faculty of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1951, but resigned in the late 1950s. In 1994, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics for his landmark work on the mathematics of game theory. His struggles with mental illness and recovery were the subject of the Academy Award-winning biopic A Beautiful Mind (2001), directed by Ron Howard and starring Russell Crowe. On May 23, 2015, Nash and his wife died when a taxi they were riding in lost control and crashed on the New Jersey Turnpike. He was 86.
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