Wan Cheng Chiu

Posted On January 2nd, 2011 -


Surrounded by wife, daughters, and family members who dearly loved him, Wan Cheng Chiu passed away on November 27, 2010 at Evergreen Hospital in Kirkland, Washington.

He was a professor of Meteorology at UH Manoa. He was born Nov 1, 1919 in Meihsien, Guangdong, China. He attended the prestigious National Central University in Chungking and came to the US under a scholarship. He obtained a Ph.D from New York University in 1951.

He was a member of the Royal Meteorological Society, American Meteorological Society, and the American Geophysical Union, and in 1951 was one of only two scholars chosen to assist Prof. Sydney Chapman, an internationally-renown geophysics scholar, with missile research at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory of the California Institute of Technology.

From 1951-1961, while at New York University, he conducted research and published numerous papers in scientific journals. In 1961, he accepted a full tenured professorship at the UH Manoa Meteorology Department where he taught and at times served as chairman until his retirement in 1987. His career in Meteorology spanned four decades during which he earned international respect and recognition. He was included in numerous biographical compilations including Men and Women in Hawaii, Leaders in American Science, American Men and Women in Science, the Dictionary of International Biographies, Who’s Who of the Republic of China, and the International Biographical Centre’s Outstanding Scientists of the 21st Century. In 2010 he received the Man of the Year Award from the American Biographical Institute.

Wan Cheng was also active in his community. In 1975, he initiated a community effort that culminated in the legal conversion of Hawaii Kai leasehold land to fee simple property.

He loved music, played Chinese violin, enjoyed ballroom dancing, Chinese literature, and excelled in ping pong and Chinese calligraphy. He was a member of the Han Sheng Choir, Guanghua Chinese Music Association, Chinese Overseas Scholars Association, and Hawaii Chinese Association.

He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and will be deeply missed. He was a very honest, kind and generous person who helped those less fortunate. He donated to many charitable causes and often served as a financial guarantor of foreign students.

He is survived by wife Margaret, daughters Linda (David), Ellen (Joe), Elaine (Cliff), grandchildren Christopher, Patrick, Tayler, Kalena, and numerous nieces and nephews.

A celebration of life will be held on January 8, 2011 at Nuuanu Mortuary, East Chapel, 2233 Nuuanu Avenue. Visitation will begin at 9 AM, service at 10. Private burial.

Wan Cheng, you will be in our hearts forever.

- Denotes U.S. Military Veteran