Jeffrey Corzine, the youngest son of Jon Corzine, the former co-chairman of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and governor of New Jersey, killed himself in Mexico after a struggle with depression, representatives of the family and the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City said yesterday.
Steven Goldberg, the family spokesman, said Jeffrey Corzine had been under treatment for the illness, without saying where he died. Melissa Martinez, an embassy spokeswoman responding to questions about Corzine, said a U.S. citizen died in Mexico on March 11 and referred reporters to Goldberg.
“Jeffrey Corzine had been suffering from severe depression for several years and recently had been receiving treatment for what is a very painful and debilitating physical and mental ailment,” Goldberg said in a statement late yesterday. “On Tuesday morning, he succumbed to his disease and made the tragic decision to take his own life.”
Corzine, who was 31 according to public records, listed his home as Malibu, California, on his Facebook Inc. account. For the past 10 years, he had worked to help other people “overcome their struggles with depression and addiction,” Goldberg said, without giving details.
In 2012, Jeffrey Corzine won Warren Buffett’s 237-player poker tournament, the NetJets Poker Invitational, at Wynn Las Vegas, according to results published by the NetJets Inc. unit of Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. The game, open to customers of the fractional-ownership program, had a grand prize of 10 flight hours on a Bombardier Inc. Global-series plane valued at $150,000.
Jeffrey Corzine is survived by a sister, Jennifer; a brother, Josh, and his parents. Jon Corzine and his wife, Joanne, divorced in 2003. Goldberg said the family is planning a private memorial service.
A photograph posted on the younger Corzine’s Facebook page showed him with President Barack Obama, who campaigned for his father’s re-election as governor in 2009. Jon Corzine, a Democrat, was defeated by Republican Chris Christie.
“My thoughts and prayers are with Governor Corzine, Joanne and the entire Corzine family,” Christie, the current New Jersey governor, said in a statement. “They are both devoted parents and the loss they have suffered is unthinkable.”
In 2007, Jeffrey Corzine was present every day at Cooper University Hospital in Camden where his father spent 18 days after a near-fatal car crash while governor. Jon Corzine emerged from that episode saying he held a newfound appreciation of family and that it had caused him to rethink his priorities.
The former governor spent 24 years at New York-based Goldman Sachs, becoming co-head of the firm with Henry Paulson, who later became the U.S. Treasury secretary under President George W. Bush. After Corzine was ousted from Goldman Sachs in 1999, he won a U.S. Senate seat representing New Jersey in 2000 and then was elected the state’s governor in 2005.
Corzine, now 67, took command of MF Global Holdings Inc., a commodity broker, in 2010. He is fighting a lawsuit brought by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission over allegations that he failed to properly oversee the company’s brokerage unit as it spiraled toward failure in 2011, as $1.6 billion in customer funds went missing.