Hospital president, wife killed in house fire

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Hospital president, wife killed in house fire
UPDATE: @CP_KimMulford writes about sudden death of #Cooper CEO/President #JohnSheridan, wife http://t.co/bLbaqzoh54 http://t.co/mSsETV7BqX
#UPDATE: #NewJersey #detectives to investigate "circumstances surrounding deaths" of Sheridans http://t.co/bLbaqzoh54 http://t.co/Azy9M0cQV3
More from reports on death of #Cooper CEO John Sheridan (2nd from rt.), wife Joyce (left) http://t.co/bLbaqzoh54 http://t.co/CgRTTAIod5
FILE - In this July, 24, 2012, file photo, John Sheridan, from left, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Cooper Health System applauds with George Norcross III, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Dr. Paul Katz during an event in Camden, N.J. Sheridan and his wife, Joyce were killed when a fire broke out in their home early Sunday, Sept. 28, 2014, in Montgomery Township. Authorities say the “circumstances surrounding the deaths” remain under investigation. (AP Photo/Mel Evans, File)
FILE - In this July, 24, 2012, file photo, John Sheridan, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Cooper Health System addresses a gathering in Camden, N.J. Sheridan and his wife, Joyce were killed when a fire broke out in their home early Sunday, Sept. 28, 2014, in Montgomery Township. Authorities say the “circumstances surrounding the deaths” remain under investigation. (AP Photo/Mel Evans, File)
FILE - In this July, 24, 2012, file photo, John Sheridan, left, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Cooper Health System talks with with George Norcross III, during an event in Camden, N.J. Sheridan and his wife, Joyce were killed when a fire broke out in their home early Sunday, Sept. 28, 2014, in Montgomery Township. Authorities say the “circumstances surrounding the deaths” remain under investigation. (AP Photo/Mel Evans, File)
Victim in deadly house fire in Montgomery is John Sheridan- fmr Transpo. Commissioner under Gov. Kean @News12NJ http://t.co/JykeFmSAoK
Cooper Health CEO John P. Sheridan Jr. /wife died in this fire in their Montgomery Twp., NJ home. @FOX29philly http://t.co/7OvDgWzSDF
Dr. Paul Katz, second right, reacts during the official opening of the new Cooper Medical School of Rowan University, with George Norcross III, left, and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, second left, in Camden, N.J., Monday, July, 24, 2012, as John P. Sheridan, Jr., President and Chief Executive Officer of The Cooper Health System suggests that Christie should give the keynote address at the upcoming Republican Convention. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
Dr. Generosa Grana, right, director of the Cooper Cancer Institute, and John P. Sheridan, Jr., second right, president and CEO of The Cooper Health System, look on as Gov. Chris Christie shakes hands with Cooper University Hospital board chairman George Norcross III, left, in Camden, N.J., Tuesday, May 15, 2012, during a groundbreaking ceremony for the Cooper Cancer Institute. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, right, John P. Sheridan, Jr., second right, president and CEO of The Cooper health System, and Cooper University Hospital board chairman George Norcross III, second left, listen to New Jersey Sen. Stephen M. Sweeney, left, D-Thorofare, N.J., in Camden, N.J., Tuesday, May 15, 2012, during a groundbreaking ceremony for the Cooper Cancer Institute. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - The president of a major southern New Jersey hospital and his wife were killed when a fire broke out in their home, authorities said Sunday.

However, the "circumstances surrounding the deaths" of 72-year-old John Sheridan and his 69-year-old wife, Joyce, remain under investigation, Somerset County Prosecutor Geoffrey Soriano said. Authorities also have not said what sparked the fire early Sunday at the couple's home in Montgomery Township.

Soriano said police and firefighters responded to the house shortly before 6:15 a.m. The fire was contained to an upstairs bedroom, where they found the unresponsive couple.

John Sheridan was pronounced dead at the scene. His wife was taken to a hospital, where she died a short time later. Autopsies will be performed to determine what caused their deaths.

John Sheridan was president and CEO of Camden-based Cooper University Health Care.

In a joint statement announcing the Sheridans' deaths, George E. Norcross III, chairman of the hospital's board of trustees, and Adrienne Kirby, president and chief executive officer of Cooper Health System, called Sheridan "incredibly talented, wise and kind - a true gentleman in every sense of the word."

Gov. Chris Christie, on whose transition team John Sheridan had a role, said he was "shocked and deeply saddened" by the Sheridans' deaths. "John was an outstanding public servant, a leader in the healthcare industry and a true New Jersey treasure," Christie said in a statement. "Joyce was an outstanding teacher, wife and mother."

Prior to joining Cooper in 2005, John Sheridan had a long career in state government. He was New Jersey's transportation commissioner in the administration of Gov. Tom Kean. He also worked on the transition team of Gov. Christine Todd Whitman.

Earlier in his career, he had served as deputy attorney general and was a general counsel for the New Jersey Turnpike Authority.

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