JP Morgan employee who fell to death from bank's London office in Canary Wharf named as Gabriel Magee
Gabriel joined JPMorgan in 2004 and worked in technology. He was not a trader or a banker.
Jim Armitage is the City editor of The Independent and London Evening Standard group of newspapers. He has been a reporter and editor for more than 20 years and was recently shortlisted for the Press Gazette financial journalist of the year and The Society of Editors financial journalist of the year awards. He contributes news, investigative reports and comment to the Independent titles plus a daily column in the Evening Standard.
Wednesday 29 January 2014
The bank worker who died after falling from the roof of JP Morgan's European headquarters in Canary Wharf on Tuesday morning has been named as Gabriel Magee, a senior IT programmer.
The 39-year-old American had been at the investment banking giant for 10 years in New York and London, working his way up to become a vice president in CIB Technology. Colleagues and friends expressed shock at his death.
Mr Magee plunged from the top of the 500ft European headquarters of the investment bank at 8am, at the peak of the financial district's rush hour. He landed on the roof of a ninth-floor podium of the building at 25 Bank Street and was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics.
A New York-based colleague, who worked with Mr Magee at JP Morgan there, said: “It is a terrible, tragic loss. He has a lot of friends in New York that are very confused and very sad right now. He was a co-worker and a very good friend. A very smart guy, with a great sense of humour.”
Paul Grunwald, who worked with Mr Magee in New Mexico in the late 1990s, said: “I'm very saddened to learn the news. Gabe was an intern for me at Intel. He was bright, funny, and a good friend.
"I tried my best to keep him at Intel but New York and London were calling him away from the desert. I will miss him and my thoughts and prayers go out to all that loved him."
Mr Grunwald said Mr Magee's father had been stationed at an air base near Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he was a military pilot flying A-10 fighter planes.
Mr Grunwald remembered that he and Mr Magee had spent their spare time computer gaming and mountain biking together. "We were good friends," he said.
Mr Magee had been finishing his computing degree at the University of New Mexico while interning at Intel, where he stayed for two years before heading to Wall Street.
Mr Grunwald said they had kept in touch fairly regularly and that he could not think of any reason for Mr Magee to be depressed.
A colleague said Mr Magee had had a relatively new relationship with a woman in London which had appeared to be going well. As recently as September, when the colleague last saw him at a dinner in London, they had talked of taking a trip with his girlfriend to Paris.
"I have to say the reason this is so confusing to me is there was no indication whatsoever of anything at that point. And we were close - we'd travelled together before, we talked about things. There was absolutely nothing that would have been and kind of red flag or indication that would have made him turn to this."
Mr Magee joined the JP Morgan group when it merged with his company, Chase Manhattan. After the merger he moved to JP Morgan in London in 2007 and had been happy, even talking of becoming a citizen, the colleague said.
A JP Morgan spokeswoman said: "We are deeply saddened to have lost a member of the JP Morgan family at 25 Bank Street today. Our thoughts and sympathy are with his family and his friends."
Local workers spoke of their shock at the scene. Emily Brimson who works nearby, said yesterday morning: ”The police came and moved the body a little, took measurements, etc, but then they all left. Now the body is lying there covered by a sheet. One policeman is manning the door."
The 33-floor building has been the European, Middle East and Africa headquarters of JP Morgan since July 2012. It was previously occupied by Lehman Brothers and Enron before that.
JP Morgan employees were informed of the tragedy in an internal email.
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