Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Mihai Patrascu, R.I.P

I just got word from Mikkel Thorup that Mihai Patrascu passed away. I had heard that he was ill, and only realized the seriousness of his condition when I saw him at STOC 2012. He came in a wheelchair to be honored for getting a Presburger award, and the entire room gave him a standing ovation.

I can only hope that he's out there proving lower bounds in the sky, and arguing fiercely with the clouds while he does so.

Update: There is now a memorial page for Mihai at Please visit there to post your comments, and have a drink for Mihai !


  1. this is so sad. he was too young.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. This is obviously an unfathomable personal loss to Mihai's friends and family. And data structures might have to wait another couple decades for someone to breathe such life into the field again. But something intangible is also gone; we have lost a unique sort of energy, vitality, and personality. Everything just got a little bit more boring.

    To steal a phrase from the real title of his FOCS 2010 paper: I hope we can all aspire to grow our balls as big as Mihai's. Rest in peace.

    James Lee

  4. I saw Mihai as recently as a couple of weeks ago at AT&T. Mikkel was bringing him around. It was obvious that Mihai was very very sick, but it's still shocking to read this news. I guess you want to hope against hope that someone so young could beat the odds and get better. May he rest in peace!

  5. Hi everyone, and first of all May he rest in Peace. I went to high school with him, he was two years older and he was more an acquaintance, but who's life I had followed due to his amazing achievements. I had known a while back about his illness and had heard he had managed to beat it...but this news comes as a shock... In my mind he was nothing short of a genius and a very good person so I hope with all my heart his family can someday live in peace with this horrible event and come to terms with it.

    RIP Mihai ...


Disqus for The Geomblog