GRAHAM, Don Ballew Don Ballew Graham, the J. Frank Dobie professor of English and American literature at the University of Texas at Austin, author, critic, and the pre-eminent scholar of Texas film, literature and popular culture died suddenly on Saturday, June 22nd.
He was the author of ten books and editor of another six, including "No Name on the Bullet: A Biography of Audie Murphy" (1989), "Kings of Texas: The 150-Year Saga of an American Ranching Family" (2003), and "Giant: Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, James Dean, Edna Ferber and the Making of a Legendary American Film" (2018).
He was also a writer at large for Texas Monthly and past president of the Texas Institute for Letters, the leading advocate for the state's literature. He was born in Collin County in 1940, when it was still mostly cotton farms, and he was generally amused by students who had never seen a cotton boll. After graduating from Carrollton High School, he earned his bachelor's degree at the University of North Texas (then North Texas State University) and a PhD at UT Austin in 1971, and worked at the University of Pennsylvania, before returning to Texas in 1976. He also taught in the Normandy program in France, and at Université Paul Valéry in Montepellier, and at the University of Sydney in Sydney, Australia. A brilliant and beloved teacher, he won multiple teaching awards at the University of Texas and in 2014 was named one of Alcade's Top Ten Professors Ever.
He wore his achievements lightly, but he wore them well. Irreverent, funny, fearless, loyal, incisive, to use adjectives he might have abhorred, his powerful and singular voice will be much missed. He is survived by his gorgeous wife of 28 years, Betsy Berry, brother Bill Graham, and other relatives alongside Tom and Viv, two rather literary cats.
Source: Dallas News