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Dallas S. Lankford IV

Wednesday, July 8, 2020
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Dallas S. Lankford IV died of natural causes June 29, 2020, at his home in Ruston, LA. Born May 16, 1942, to Willie Lee and Dallas S. Lankford, III, in Milton, Florida, where his father was stationed for flight training, he was raised in and around Quitman, Texas, and attended the University of Texas at Austin, where he received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D., all in mathematics.

After receiving his bachelor’s degree in 1964, he served in the Peace Corps in India, where he taught math and science at a Methodist Boys’ School in Hyderabad and then in Bheemunipatnam in Andhra Pradesh.

After receiving his doctorate, he did postdoctoral work in computer science and continued to do research, publishing seminal work in artificial intelligence for the University of Texas Mathematics Department’s Automated Theorem Proving Project. One of his most often cited works is “On proving term rewriting systems are Noetherian.”

Along with his research, he taught mathematics at Stephen F. Austin University after completing his M.S. degree and at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, after earning his Ph. D.

Then he worked for University of Southern California (USC) Information Sciences Institute in Marina del Rey, California.

In 1978, he took a position as professor of mathematics at Louisiana Tech University, where he continued to consult and research with industry and government. After retiring in 2003, he devoted himself full time to his longtime passion of BCB DX radio, experimenting with and documenting low frequency receive arrays, building and testing antennas, and rebuilding vintage military radios (for an example, visit While the complexity of his mathematics research and radio pursuits required intense focus, time, and independence, those who knew him well admired his intellectual brilliance, tremendous energy, sense of humor, and his charismatic, sparkling personality.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Elizabeth Enloe.

He is survived by his twin brother, William S. Lankford and wife Carolyn of El Paso, Texas; his niece, Susan Lankford Bolduc and husband Mark of El Paso; his grandnephew, Fox Bolduc of Dallas, Texas; his brother-in-law Charles Enloe of Whitehouse, Texas; and friends and colleagues, including close friend and colleague George Butler of Ruston.

Interment will be at Mt. Pisgah Cemetery in Wood County, Texas.