Dale was born on Sept. 2, 1947 at Sioux City, to Vern and Jo Ann (Sweeney) Nelson. He attended Central High School in Sioux City and later earned his GED. He was in the United States Marine Corps from 1966-1969, and worked as a construction and masonry worker for many years until his retirement, due to illness, in March of 2011 .He was affiliated with the Methodist church, and. enjoyed playing golf and pool, and was a fan of all sports.
Dale was preceded in death by his parents and is survived by one sister, Nancy Knapp and her husband Evan of Cherokee; nieces and nephews Sally Selby and her husband Jason of Kansas City, Mo., Sue Sauer and her husband Jared, and their sons Daniel and Ryan of Lanark, Ill., Doug Knapp and his wife Cyndy of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, Heidi Howlett and her husband of Chuck of Geneva, Illinois;and an aunt and uncle, Gary and Jane Baumann of Lincoln, Nebraska.