Page 169

KOJI KOBAYASHI

1907–1996

BY MICHIYUKI UENOHARA

DR. KOJI KOBAYASHI, chairman emeritus of NEC Corporation, died at age of eighty-nine in a hospital in Tokyo on November 30, 1996.

Dr. Kobayashi was born in Hatsukari village, Yamanashi Prefecture, on February 17, 1907, the fourth boy among nine children, five boys, and four girls. His village was a poor mountain village, and the nearest middle school was eight kilometers away through narrow, mountainous paths. All his elder brothers took jobs in remote cities after they finished the six years of education at the village primary school. He was a very bright boy and kept the top grade throughout the six years. He was so anxious to study further and finally got permission to continue his studies for two more years at the higher class of the same village primary school. He taught himself the middle school curriculum, while taking the regular courses and was admitted into the third-year class (ninth grade) of Tsuru middle school. To save money, he walked sixteen kilometers to school every day, rain or shine. Since he attained the grade average of ninety-four out of a perfect hundred, he was awarded a scholarship. He was determined to work after middle school, but his brothers volunteered to support his school expenses and he advanced to Matsumoto High School in Matsumoto city, where he met many brilliant friends from all over Japan. Fortunately he was awarded the Nomura Fellowship from the Nomura Foundation. He gradu-



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement