I was saddened to receive a message that my friend and colleague, Roman Juszkiewicz, died earlier today.
Roman was a Polish cosmologist who began his career in the Russian school, working with Ya. Zeldovich, probably the most eminent Soviet cosmologist and astrophysicist of the 20th Century. Roman himself went on to work in Paris, Berkeley, Geneva, Princeton, and of course back in Poland in both Warsaw and more recently in Zielona Gora, always doing his best to find friends and collaborators in places worth a visit.
He specialised in trying to understand the growth of structures in the universe. I was lucky enough to work with him on a series of papers over the last decade and a half, mostly examining how the motions of galaxies respond to the distribution of matter, and how we can use that to measure the total density of matter. Most recently, in one of Roman’s very last papers, we tried to clear up some confusion about the relationships amongst different ways of measuring and describing the clustering of the matter and of the galaxies that we directly observe.
As much as I will remember and miss Roman as a collaborator, I and most of his friends will surely miss him even more as a companion: Roman liked to enjoy his friends’ company as much over food and wine as over a good scientific discussion. Ideally, of course, we managed both at the same time, often well into the night and leaving many empty bottles and plates behind.
Tonight, I will try to leave at least a couple of empty glasses behind in Roman’s memory and honour.