Professor Pejaver V. Rao (known as P.V.) died on January 2, 2015 at his retirement home in North Carolina after a lengthy and courageous battle with cancer. He was hospitalized in mid December, but returned home to spend the holidays with his family, who were with him at his death.
Professor Rao was born in 1935 in southwest India. He earned a BA in 1954 from the University of Madras and an MA in 1956 from the University of Bombay. After a few years of teaching statistics at the College of Science, Nagpur, he received a Georgia Rotary Scholarship to complete his graduate work in statistics at the University of Georgia, from which he received a PhD in 1963.
P.V. accepted a faculty appointment in the newly formed Department of Statistics at the University of Florida in 1964, and was a guiding light for the department for the next 34 years. He developed and taught many of the graduate courses offered by the department, and served as the PhD adviser for numerous doctoral students. He carried out research in nonparametric statistics and branched out to the analysis of survival data as a result of his consulting with faculty of the medical colleges. His textbook Statistical Methods in the Life Sciences resulted from his excellence in teaching statistics to diverse groups of graduate students in the life sciences. He retired from the University of Florida in 1998.
P.V. was a member of IMS and ASA, and an elected member of the International Statistical Institute. He was a very valuable contributor to the statistics profession, the University of Florida and the Gainesville community. P.V. will be greatly missed by the many people whose lives he touched and enlightened, not only through his knowledge of statistics, but also through his wide-ranging wisdom and finely-tuned sense of humor.
Further information can be found at http://goo.gl/0j5TE8
Written by Richard L. Scheaffer, Ronald H. Randles, Dennis D. Wackerly, and Brett Presnell (University of Florida)