Dr Randall Delane Ledford

July 21, 2022

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Dr. Randall Delane Ledford, age 72, of 12630 Canyon Oaks Drive, Frisco, Texas, passed away peacefully at his home in Frisco, Texas on July 21, 2022, surrounded by his family.  He was born on January 14, 1950 in Johnson City, Tennessee to Buster and Kate Griffith Ledford.  He is survived by his wife, Wanda Gouge Ledford.  They were married on August 19, 1972 and were just a few weeks short of their 50th wedding anniversary.  He is also survived by his mother, Kate Griffith Ledford Pate, age 94, of Spruce Pine, North Carolina, two daughters Jennifer Ledford Bentley (Rob), Janet Ledford Moyle (Rob), five grandchildren, Katelyn Nicole Moyle, Alexander Carver Bentley, Brayden Robert Moyle, Sebastian Wyatt Bentley, and Zachary Randall Bentley, all from Frisco, TX.  He is survived by one aunt, Lila Ledford Hughes of Houston, TX and multiple cousins. He is also survived by stepbrother Phillip R. Pate (Brenda) and Steve Pate (Becky). He was predeceased by his father, Buster Ledford, his brother, Gregory Ward Ledford, and his stepfather, Eston Pate.  He was known to many as Randy, Randall, RL, Leds, Wanda’s husband, Jennifer and Janet’s Dad, and most importantly to his five grandchildren he was known as Doc-Doc.  He was a member of St. Andrew United Methodist Church in Plano, TX.


Randall had a curious mind from a very young age.  He loved school and he loved learning.  He often said one of the greatest gifts from his parents was a set of World Book Encyclopedias.  He would stay up reading late into the night absorbing the knowledge those books held.  He excelled in school and graduated from Bowman High School in Bakersville, North Carolina in 1968 and was named the valedictorian of his class.


He received a full scholarship from Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and enrolled in the fall of 1968.  At Wake Forest he majored in math, chemistry, and physics and he developed a strong love for physics.  He received his Bachelor of Science degree, Magna Cum Laude, in 1972 from Wake Forest University.  Upon his graduation from Wake Forest, he was awarded the William Eugene Speas Memorial  Award for Distinguished Work in Physics.  After marrying Wanda in August of 1972, he enrolled as a graduate student in the Physics Department at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina.  While at Duke, he did his doctoral research at TUNL (Triangle Universities Nuclear Laboratory).  He received his PhD in Nuclear Physics from Duke University in 1976.   In 2018,  Randall received the Wake Forest University Physics Department Outstanding Alumni Award.  Randall generously sponsored scholarships for physics undergraduate majors at Wake Forest University, under the Randall D. Ledford Scholarship I and Scholarship II Physics awards.


Randall began his career at Bell Telephone Laboratories in Holmdel, New Jersey, where he worked on UNIX development, fiber optic communication and microwave transmissions.  Randall joined Texas Instruments in Johnson City, Tennessee in 1980 and worked there for nine years, Hunt Valley, Maryland for four years, and ended up at Corporate Headquarters in Dallas, Texas for five years.  He was President and General Manager of several divisions of Texas Instruments Inc., which included software, digital imaging, enterprise solutions and process automation.  While at Texas Instruments, Dr. Ledford led the company’s development of the Digital Light Processor (DLP).


He ultimately was offered a job from Emerson Electric in Saint Louis, Missouri to become Sr. Vice President and Chief Technology Officer.  Emerson Electric is one of the world’s leading electronics companies.  As the President of Emerson Ventures, Randall and his team of technical, financial and legal experts evaluated and invested in new ideas generated by start-ups.  Part of his work at Emerson involved “globalizing” the engineering department.  He created an engineering center in India that employs 1,000 engineers. He created a similar center in Romania.  Randall worked for Emerson from 1997 to 2014, almost 18 years.  When he retired from Emerson, he and Wanda spent time in their summer home in Asheville, North Carolina and at their home in Frisco, Texas.  Randall had extensively traveled the world during his career and continued to enjoy traveling with Wanda after his retirement.  They traveled to all seven continents.   He also planned special family trips each year to a fun destination for his wife, daughters, sons-in-law, and grandchildren.  Many special family memories were made on these trips.


A Celebration of Life service will be held at Snow Hill Baptist Church, 258 Slagle Road, Bakersville, North Carolina on Saturday, August 13, 2022, the same church where he and Wanda were married.  The family will receive friends from 1:00-2:15 pm at the church with the service immediately following at 2:30 pm.  In lieu of flowers, donations maybe made in Randall’s memory to the Mitchell County Education Foundation (501 C-3), c/o of John Wilson, 302 Slagle Road, Bakersville, North Carolina 28705.  Also, donations may be made to the American Cancer Society at 1-800-227-2345.  Stonebriar Funeral Home and Cremation Services served the family in Frisco, Texas. Henline-Hughes Funeral Home will assist the family the day of the service.


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