Conway was 82.
CNN  — 

John H. Conway, a Princeton professor and internationally renowned mathematician who created one of the earliest computer games, has died at the age of 82.

Conway passed away Saturday as a result of complications from COVID-19, his wife confirmed to CNN on Tuesday morning.

The operator of Conway’s nursing home in New Brunswick, New Jersey confirmed it had cases of coronavirus on its website. Conway had been at the facility, Parker at Landing Lane, since July 2019, his wife, Diana Conway, told CNN.

With more than 60 years of research, Conway discovered the concept of surreal numbers and invented one of the first computer games, “The Game of Life,” according to his biographer Siobhan Roberts.

Conway and his wife, Diana, celebrating his honorary degree from the University of Liverpool in 2001.

A Google search for “Conway’s Game of Life” prompts the search engine to automatically start playing the game. It is now commonly used as an introductory exercise in computing classes, Roberts said.

Conway used his love of games to connect with children, spending time at math camps across the country.

Educated at Cambridge University and an Ivy League professor, he avoided “pomp and circumstance,” his wife said.

“He was never someone who cared about a person’s pedigree,” Diana Conway said. “He just cared about the person.”

Conway with son Gareth in 2002, during Gareth's birthday party.

Princeton University’s mathematics department issued a short statement after he passed, acknowledging his many awards. Conway’s awards included the London Mathematical Society’s Berwick Prize and the American Mathematical Society’s Leroy P. Steele Prize.

Conway is survived by his wife, Diana, and seven children.