October 10, 1919 -
April 1, 2012
Published in The Oklahoman
on April 8, 2012
OKLAHOMA CITY Professor
R.B. Deal, was born as Roy B. Deal Jr. on 10/10/1919 in Hammon, OK. He
died on 04/01/2012 at the age of 92.
He is survived by his wife, Dorothy, his daughters Louanne (Jimmy) Crisp,
Marilyn (Richard) Coulson, Maureen (Dick) Seavey, Rebecca (Mike) Ford,
daughter-in-law Trish Deal, grandchildren and great-grandchildren too
numerous to mention, sister Ruthela Kline, brother, Ellis "Cot"
(Katie) Deal, and many nieces and nephews and cousins.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Roy Bryan Deal, Sr. and Ruth Fergason
Deal, brother, Clarence and son, Paul.
R.B. started school in Hydro OK, in 1925, moved to Oklahoma City in 1927
and graduated from Central High School in 1937. There he won the Philomathea
Award as the outstanding mathematics student as well as pitching all of
one game and most of another in one day to become the first of three generations
of Deals to win a State Championship in baseball.
That summer he pitched for the Junior Gassers in the State Sandlot Tournament.
He was 17, and won the first of 3 games for the championship, pitching
against players with college and professional baseball experience. He
was the only unanimous selection for the All Star team. He went to OU
in 1937. While pitching for OU in 1939, he was 4-0 in the Big Six Conference,
including the crucial game for the championship.
He switched from architecture to mathematics in 1938. In 1940 he signed
with the Pittsburg Pirates, and was sent to Hutchinson, KS. He always
said his major accomplishment in 1940 was marrying Dorothy Crawford on
September 16th. From 11/1/1940 to 07/12/1944 he worked at Boeing in Wichita,
KS. After they got the B29 rolling in 1944 he went into the Navy. He was
sent to Radar school in Point Loma, CA and taught radar theory there.
He returned to OU, got his BA in 1947, MA in 1948, and PhD in 1953. That
fall he took a job as assistant professor at what is now OSU and became
associate professor in 1957, and professor in 1961.
In 1960 he was awarded a grant by the National Science Foundation to spend
a year at the Sorbonne in Paris, France with two week sessions in the
University of Nancy in Strasbourg, France, Eidgenoessische Technische
Hochschule in Zurich, Switzerland, and Hilgert Institute in Gotingen,
Germany. He also spent a week as a critic at Piaget's Instiuit Epistemologique
et Logique in Geneva, Switzerland. He returned to OSU where he directed
several PhDs in mathematics and several advanced degrees in a program
he designed a DE with mathematics emphasis. In 1967, he came to Oklahoma
City to the University of OK Health Sciences Center, where he taught in
the Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology and directed many PhDs
in this area for 18 years.
In 1976, on a six month sabbatical, he lectured and consulted at Pahlavi
University in Shiraz, Iran and studied in London, Manchester, Stockholm,
Athens, Rome, Madrid, and Dublin. In 1985, he retired as Professor Emeritus.
In his retirement years he was given the Meritorious Service Award by
the Mathematical Association of America. Paul Deal, with the help of several
of Dr. Deal's PhD graduates, funded the R.B. Deal Symposium. He gave the
first L. Wayne Johnson Lecture at the University of Central Oklahoma.
He was active in the annual meetings of the Oklahoma-Arkansas Section
of the MAA, giving the Nathan Altschiller Court Lecture one year, and
a paper almost every year.
He loved people and let them know. Everyone who came into contact with
R.B. Deal became his friend. In a word, he was "considerate."
A memorial service will be held Friday, April 13, 2012, at St. Luke's
First United Methodist Church at 3:00 pm. Flowers will be accepted at
Bill Merritt Funeral Service, 6201 N.W. 39th Expressway, Bethany, OK 73008,
(405) 789-5622, when it is closer to the service date.