The search for Japanese balloonist Michio Kanda

Michio Kanda is a Japanese town office employee and world-record-holding balloonist who has gone missing over the North Pacific while attempting to fly from Japan to North America. My brother and sister-in-law are part of his support team. They’ve set up a blog to provide updates on the ongoing attempt to locate him at

On his latest trip Kanda-san, who is 58, was attempting to break two world records: his own for duration spent in the air, and one currently held by Richard Branson for the longest distance travelled in a hot air balloon. His balloon “Starlight” is the second-biggest ever made. It has a safety capsule equipped with 20 days’ food and water.

Here’s hoping the search is successful and Kanda-san is soon found safe and well.

Michio Kanda

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