Goodbye Masaru!

In the end of March, Masaru Kunii finished his 2-year stay in my lab as a visiting researcher from the Meteorological Research Institute, Japan Meteorological Agency, and went back to Japan. He was a very dedicated researcher, kept working very hard and consistently, and accomplished a number of developments and original research. The most important achievements include the development of the WRF-LETKF system and the pioneering research on forecast sensitivity to observations with the ensemble approach of Liu and Kalnay (2008). I would like to highlight his scientific achievements in another blog entry near future.

For now, I would like to illuminate his achievement of finishing his first marathon in Baltimore 6 months ago. The picture above is what we took by ourselves with the Maryland Double medals/t-shirts and the corresponding Frederick Half-marathon and Baltimore Marathon finisher medals. I believe running was not his habit before he came to Maryland. I started running after I moved to Maryland, so did he. In 1 and a half years of his running career, he finished his first Marathon in Baltimore Running Festival in October 2011. This was my third marathon. I had a very nice company to be at the start line together in the early morning of the race day. I will do my third Maryland Double this year (what is shown in the picture is my second MD Double medal), but this time, alone again. I will miss Masaru on the race days.