Sailes Kumar Sengupta

For Obituary Headshot Sailes Kumar Sengupta

Sailes Kumar Sengupta of Livermore died Aug. 14. He was 80.

Born in Bankura, West Bengal India to Bhabani Charan Sen and Pratima Sen (nee Gupta), he spent his childhood split between Bankura and Kolkata, India, growing up in a large joint family.

Sengupta was a student in many academic subjects, but first and foremost was mathematics. He particularly excelled during his master's degree in pure mathematics from the University of Calcutta, graduating at the top of his class. He was awarded the prestigious Gossain Scholar of the Year and won three gold medals. He then chose the path of an educator and was employed in a state college teaching mathematics for six years. He came to the United States in 1963 to pursue doctoral work at the University of California. Berkeley where he was offered a research fellowship. He had especially fond memories of his years living at UC Berkeley’s International House, meeting and mingling with scholars from all over the world. In 1969, upon completion of his statistics Ph.D. in game theory, he took on his second life's adventure, marriage. He returned to India and married his wife, Sumedha Choudhury, who shared his love of mathematics, statistics and music.

Together, they moved to Kansas City, Missouri, where he began life as an academic at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, where he taught for six years in the Math Department. He moved to Rapid City, South Dakota in 1976 and taught undergraduate and graduate students at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology from 1976 until 1990. Over that time, he began to shift his professional interests to research, and published several important journal papers and edited a book. After gaining U.S. citizenship, he held summer research positions at Langley National Lab in Langley, Virginia and Argonne National Lab in Argonne, Illinois. Yearning to return to the Bay Area, Sengupta eventually took a position as a visiting scientist at the Naval Research Laboratory in Monterey and later a position as a research engineer in Electronics Engineering at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, where he continued to publish his work regularly. He retired from Lawrence Livermore in 2005.

He was a long time member of the American Statistical Association, Sigma XI and the IEEE. He had recently completed the manuscript for a statistics textbook he co-authored with his wife.

An avid reader, Sengupta kept himself busy in retirement reading literature in both English and Bengali. He was a lifelong music aficionado, both of Indian and Western classical music. He enjoyed playing the bamboo flute (bansuri) and electric Hawaiian guitar, and attending concerts around the Bay Area and at the Bankhead Theater in Livermore, as a patron of that organization. He and his wife also traveled internationally whenever their time and health permitted. He was a lover of current events, politics, grassroots causes and accepting of all people regardless of their background. Over the years, he mentored many students and young minds to pursue their academic interests. He will be greatly missed by all those who knew him.

Sengupta was extremely loving and proud of his two daughters, Dyuti Sengupta and her husband, Rajneel Ganjoo of Belmont, California, and Chaitee Sengupta, and her husband, Berg Danielson of Seattle, Washington.

He is survived by his wife and best friend, Sumedha Sengupta; daughters, Dyuti and Chaitee; four grandchildren, Kavi and Maanas Danielson and Ayana and Kaya Ganjoo; his two brothers, Baladeb and Basudeb Sen; his sister, Pranati Roy of Kolkata India, as well as his many cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.

A private viewing, memorial and cremation service was held at Callaghan Funeral Home and Mortuary, in Livermore.

Donations in lieu of flowers are requested to be sent to one of the following charitable organizations: the American Heart Association, the South Asian Heart Center in Mountain View, California or the Paralyzed Veterans of America.