- Charismatic poker professional Matt Marafioti has died after jumping from the 28th floor in New Jersey
- The player was deeply troubled in the final weeks leading up to the tragedy and professed his love for his one-year-old son on social media
- Marafioti was caught in a custodial battle for his son and was saddened by a recent breakup
After a long struggle with conspiracy theories and undefined mental illness, poker professional Matt Marafioti has died by suicide in New Jersey.
Poker Pro Marafioti Passes Away
Troubled poker professional Matt “ADZ” Marafioti has committed suicide jumping off from a friend’s apartment located on the 28th floor of a New Jersey condominium. Marafioti was staying over following a breakup and while he was still engaged in a legal battle to gain custody of his one-year-old son.
According to the Daily Voice, which first reported on the tragedy, two lifeguards discovered Marafioti’s body. Upon arrival, police went up to the apartment, where they found bags filled with $24,000 in cash.
Friends who spoke to the Daily Voice anonymously said that Marafioti had been struggling with a major mental problem and that he stopped posting on social media a few days prior to the accident. Marafioti’s issues began to manifest weeks before the accident, too.
He was convinced that people were out to get him, and he shared a picture of a man on Instagram, alleging that he was going to try and abduct him. “If I leave this apartment, they are going to make me go missing,” Marafioti said, adding that it was all a Catch-22 and that “they” would try to convince his loved ones that he was crazy or simply make him disappear.
Marafioti once disappeared in the past for 45 days. At the time, his social media posts focused on conspiracy theories, which scared people when he actually went away. However, he resurfaced a month and a half later, announcing that he was okay.
A Father’s Love for His Son
Yet, amid those ramblings, Marafioti always seemed to gravitate towards his son, who turned one just shortly before the accident. He posted a picture of himself and his son and went on sharing how he felt about his boy.
“I’m so proud of my son and love him so much. He’s the most incredible person I’ve ever met. Despite what happens in this situation, my time spent with him was the most fulfilling and incredible experience I’ve ever had in my life,” Marafioti said in an emotional post.
The poker community was naturally saddened by the news. Doug Polk, a famed poker professional who has far surpassed Marafioti’s fame, admitted that he had admired the player back in 2010 when Marafioti was just making a name for himself, and he was Polk’s motivation to pursue poker more aggressively as a career choice.
Friends were deeply saddened by the news, with many arguing that Marafioti was an intelligent, beautiful, and loving person and that, just like all human beings, he had vulnerabilities. “Life is not easy,” one friend concluded.
Marafioti will be remembered in the poker canon, but the fact that he did not get the help he needed is doubly saddening.