Ian Crystal liquor CEO falls to his death doing backflip at Citi Field concert for the Dead and Company show. Creative and adventurous executive remembered.
A liquor company CEO allegedly high on acid plummeted to his death at Citi Field stadium, during a tribute concert for the Grateful Dead last week.
Ian Matthew Crystal died Friday after falling 30 to 50 feet during intermission at the Dead & Company show, a NYPD spokesman confirmed Monday.
Crystal, who jumped from a second-floor concourse, was pronounced dead at New York-Presbyterian Hospital in Queens, police said.
A driver outside the stadium said he saw the man later identified as Crystal ‘flip’ before falling and slamming into the ground below.
‘He attempted a body flip, fell, and landed on the balcony below,’ police told the New York Daily News. Investigators found no signs of criminality.
The late entrepreneur served as CEO of Evolution Spirits, the creator of Monkey Rum from Trinidad which is available in 11 states. The liquor label was developed out of a challenge in 2014 to create a new brand to support the National Geographic Channel show ‘Chug,’ according to Crystal’s LinkedIn profile.
Earlier in his career, Crystal, known for his creativity and desire for adventure, had managed eponymous brands such as ABSOLUT Vodka, Malibu Rum and Stoli Vodka.
The Emory University MBA graduate had also worked from 1998 through 2000 as an account director at News America Marketing, a former subsidiary of News Corp. Prior to that, he worked as an intern at Fox News Channel starting in 1996, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Former beverage employee, Laura Birnbaum, 32, told nypost she formerly worked as a sales and marketing coordinator for Crystal, who described the executive as ‘thinking big.’
Birnbaum last worked for Crystal in 2016 or 2017, but the pair had kept in touch, she said.
‘He was definitely a people person,’ Birnbaum said. ‘He had big ideas and there were no limits to the ideas he had. It was all about taking a good idea and how to make it happen while thinking big.’
Crystal ‘enjoyed having a good time,’ but Birnbaum said she had never witnessed him partying to excess or seen him take hard drugs.
‘I knew him pretty well,’ Birnbaum continued. ‘[I’m] very shocked. He had so many things that he wanted to do and it’s sad that his life came to an end while he was so young. I know he had so many aspirations. We lost a good one.’
Another friend, meanwhile, referred to Crystal as ‘The Rooster’ in a Facebook tribute.
‘One of ones who was always down for the next adventure or for a long conversation that could go deep or off the rails in the best way,’ friend, Neal Weinstein wrote. ‘Left a long list of people that will miss you. Glad to have known you buddy.’