The Sad Story Of A Former Lehman Star Recently Ended In Suicide

Lehman Brother Sept. 15

For Charles Hopper, a former star at Lehman Brothers, the hurt of the financial crisis never subsided. 

Last month, after years of failed recoveries and financial instability, the 63-year old hanged himself in the garage of Greenwich, CT home, leaving behind wife Kathryn and three formerly-estranged children, the Post reports

The later years of his life, marked by quickly vanishing wealth and underemployment, were a far cry from the Hopper’s pre-crisis lifestyle. From the Post:

In New York, Hopper was considered a class act at Lehman, where he had built up the firm’s hedge-fund advisory and private-client business for a decade, catering to the ultra-wealthy.

“He was one of the elder statesmen of the asset-management advisory industry,” said a hedge-fund executive.

And he had the material wealth to match. Friends knew him for his fancy watches, showy cars and for giving his wife whatever she wanted, which included tuition to the Graduate School of Architecture at Columbia University, membership at the elite Greenwich Water Club and expensive photography equipment. 

But once Lehman collapsed, so did Hopper’s fortune. Despite temporary employment at Citigroup before settling into a $150,000-year advisory role, Hopper never made his money back. At the time of his death he owed roughly $1.9 million in mortgage payments on his Greenwich home. But it gets sadder yet, Hopper reportedly knew the worth of his own life:

Yet in what now appears an ominous comment three months before he died, Hopper had told (his tenant and convicted sex offender David) Weil that his life insurance would pay out in the event of a suicide, according to the police report.

His policy is believed to be worth several million.

A sad, sad story indeed. 

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