In a shocking announcement today, the family of Matthew Mellon, former chair of the New York Republican Party finance committee, said that he has lost his long-running battle with drug addiction while in rehab in a Mexico clinic. Said to be worth just over $1 billion, Mellon struggled with addiction for a large part of his adult life. He eventually lost his battle on July 16th, in Cancun, Mexico.

Ex-husband of Jimmy Choo founder

The couples dirty laundry was definitely aired during their divorce in 2004, with the revelation of drug misuse going public and news of his addiction shocking the banking world. It was revealed that British born Tamara met Matthew while they were in rehab.

According to the BBC, the pair met while in recovery at Narcotic Anonymous. They eventually married in one of the UK's grandest houses: Blenheim Palace.

Mellon, married to fashion designer Nicole Hanley, went on to father two children with her but the relationship failed and the couple had been estranged since 2015.

$100,000 a week habit

It was reported in 2016 that Matthew Mellon was addicted to the legal pain-killer Oxycontin. It was prescribed by doctors, in his words, "like smarties."

Reports at the time estimated that he was spending upwards of $100,000 a week and popping over 80 Oxycontin tablets a day. According to a BBC report, Mellon told the New York Post at the time: "Oxycontin is like legal Heroin."

He grew up in Palm Beach, Florida and became hooked on pain-killers after a surfing injury.

Mellon attended the same business school as Donald Trump, the Wharton School. Other notable alumni include South African billionaire, Elon Musk.

$2 million investment into $1 billion fortune

Matthew Mellon was one of the first to spot the potential of crypto-currency, investing a cool $2 million in a currency known as Ripple. That investment proved to be sound business acumen, growing his fortune to over $1 billion.

Ripple, or XRP, is now worth $2.34 per coin compared to half a cent a year ago. That now makes Ripple coins the second most valuable crypto-currency, placing it just behind Bitcoin [VIDEO].

Mellon came from good banking stock. He was a direct descendant of the founder of the Mellon Bank of New York, Thomas Alexander Mellon as well as philanthropist Andrew Mellon.

Heirs?

Mellon, born in New York City in 1964, leaves three children: Olympia, Force, and Minty. The family has asked that the press give them room to grieve.