Dale Fike Dodrill was born in Stockton, Kansas February 7, 1926 to George and Lettie (Fike) Dodrill. He was the fourth of six children. Raised on a farm in Kansas during the dust bowl, the family was forced to move and resettled in Laporte, Colorado in 1936. Dale was a member of Loveland High School’s state football championship team in 1942. Dale graduated from Loveland High School in 1944. Immediately upon graduating, Dale was drafted into the army. He fought in World War II in the 30th Infantry Division under General Patton and was in the Battle of the Bulge.
After the war, Dale continued his football career at Colorado A & M and played varsity all four years. Dale played lineman on both sides of the ball. The program went 28-11-1 over the course of his four years and reached its first ever bowl game, the 1949 Raisin Bowl. Dale was an all-conference selection for his final three seasons and was selected to play in the 1950 East-West Shrine Game. He would later be voted to the CSU Football All-Century Team. Dale was selected in the sixth round of the 1951 NFL Draft by the Pittsburgh Steelers and spent his nine-year career with the Steelers. Dale was elected to the NFL Pro Bowl in 54, 55, 56 and 58. In 2007, Dale was selected to be a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers Legends Team. This team honors the franchises’ best players from the pre-1970 era.
Dale met the love of his life, Jan Briggs, on a blind date set up by her older brother, Red. They were married in Englewood, Colorado on February 28, 1954. Dale and Jan’s family began to grow during his football career with the birth of their eldest son, Garrett on December 5, 1955 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Michael joined the family on September 14, 1957 in Denver, Colorado. Their third son, David was born in Denver, Colorado on August 12, 1961. Michael went to be with the Lord in April 1964.
He retired from playing football to join the newly-formed Denver Broncos in 1960 as the defensive coach on a two-man coaching staff. During the off seasons, Dale started Dale Dodrill Insurance, in 1961. In 1965, he retired from coaching to focus full time on his family and his insurance agency. He sold the business to his two sons, Garrett and David in 1991, but continued to be an active part of Dodrill Insurance, Inc. into 2018.
Hall of fame inductions:
*Loveland High School inaugural Hall of Fame in 2015
*Colorado State University inaugural Sports Hall of Fame in 1988
*Colorado Sports Hall of Fame in 1993
*Pittsburgh Pro football Hall of Fame in 2016.
Dale enjoyed fishing, hunting, gardening, and card games. Dale loved spending time with his family, especially his three grand kids: Rachael, Isaac and Sarah. Family traditions around the holidays were especially important to Dale. He enjoyed traveling with Jan to many international destinations including Spain, France, China, Australia, New Zealand, Dubai, Africa, Mexico, Canada, Europe and many cruises. He was an active member of his church and a big supporter of missions’ programs in Denver and around the world.
Dale went to be with the Lord January 18, 2019. He is preceded in death by his parents, his wife Jan, his brothers and his son Michael. He is survived by his sister Peggy, his sons Garrett and David, his daughter-in-law Sharon and his grandkids Rachael, Isaac and Sarah.
A Memorial service is planned for Saturday February 2, 2019 at 11:00 am at The Rock Community Church, 12472 West Belleview Avenue; Littleton, CO 80127.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Lutheran Hospice, 3210 Lutheran Parkway, Wheat Ridge, CO 80033.
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