Ernest Dale Meeler of Griffin, Georgia passed away on Friday, May 5 at Piedmont Hospital in Newnan, Georgia after a lengthy illness.Dale was born in Soperton, Georgia to the late John William (J.W.) and Jeanette Proctor Meeler on November 15, 1953. He attended Truetlen County High School where he played football for the Panthers. He then attended the University of Georgia, majoring in Industrial Arts. Dale was always an avid Georgia Bulldog fan. He retired in 2012 after many years in the textile and insurance businesses.Dale is survived by his partner of 11 years, Julie Caldwell Sykes, and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews. He always remained close to his family, who gathers twice each year for reunions in Soperton. One brother, William Edwain Meeler, predeceased him. Growing up, Dale was always a shadow behind his father and grandfather, Lewis Proctor, helping them with whatever they were doing. Starting in his early teenage years and continuing through college, Dale was very self-sufficient by having numerous part time and summer jobs. These included morning milk deliveries before school, mowing lawns, movie projectionist on the weekends, grocery store bag boy, road and bridge construction worker, telephone company technician installing and repairing home phones, working for the Oxford Manufacturing Company, and as an assistant at the University of Georgia Veterinary School.Throughout his later life, Dale enjoyed playing golf and was a past member of the Spalding County Kiwanis Club. He also loved attending his and Julie’s Friday Night Supper Club with close friends, beach vacations, tours of homes and the Georgia Trust Historic Rambles. One of the most rewarding aspects of Dale’s life was helping his friends with their home, mechanical, electrical, and electronic projects.A visitation will be held from 2-4 p.m. on Sunday, May 21 at Haisten McCollough Funeral Home in Griffin, Georgia with a brief memorial service in between at 3 p.m. Dispersal of ashes will be private.In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Salvation Army, Saint Jude’s Hospital, Shriners Hospitals for Children, or the Wounded Warrior Project.