Dr. Yoji Kondo, known to science fiction readers as Eric Kotani, passed away yesterday at the age of 84.
Yoji Kondo was an astrophysicist at NASA/GSFC, where he served as Director of the NASA International Ultraviolet Explorer (IUE) satellite observatory, among other prestigious appointments, and had formerly served as the head of the astrophysics laboratory at NASA/Johnson Space Flight Center during the Apollo and Skylab years. He was a mentor for many scientists at NASA, and a man of renowned generosity. He was also a black belt in Aikido and Judo.
Yoji wrote five science fiction books under the pseudonym of Eric Kotani, in collaboration with John Maddox Roberts and Roger McBride Allen. He edited Requiem: New Collected Works by Robert A. Heinlein and Tributes to the Grand Master (1992), and contributed to New Destinies, Vol VI/Winter 1988 – Robert A. Heinlein Memorial Issue (1988), after his friend Robert Heinlein passed away in 1988.
A special thanks to SFWA member, Alan Smale for the In Memoriam post.