Remembering Dr. Dale Joseph Meier (1922-2022)

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We are sad to report that alumnus Dale Joseph Meier (PhD ’51) passed away at the age of 99 on March 12, 2022.

A polymer scientist, Dr. Meier received his Ph.D. in chemistry from UCLA in 1951. Prior to his retirement in 2009, he was a Professor, Distinguished Research Fellow, and Program Manager at the Midland Molecular Institute, in Midland, Michigan.

From Midland Daily News:

Dr. Dale Joseph Meier Obituary

Dale was born April 21, 1922 in The Dalles, Oregon to Joseph and Ellen Meier. He grew up in Los Angeles and attended school there, graduating from George Washington High School in 1940. The family spent many summers at the log cabin his parents built in Dillard, Oregon in 1924. Here began his love of fishing, nature and being outdoors. 

In 1942 Dale paused his studies at the California Institute of Technology to enlist in the United States Marine Corps during World War II, serving as a First Lieutenant in Okinawa, Japan.

Upon returning from the war, Dale continued his education at CalTech and later attended UCLA where he earned his PhD.

Dale met Helen Ledin in 1946, and they were married June 19, 1948 in Los Angeles. The couple moved to the San Francisco Bay Area where Dale was employed at Shell Development Company. During his time at Shell, he was transferred with his family to The Netherlands for one year. The family returned to the Bay Area and then he was transferred to the Los Angeles area for a year with Shell.  

In 1972, the family moved to Midland, Michigan where Dale accepted a position at the newly opened Midland Macromolecular Institute (which was later named Midland Molecular Institute) as a Sr. Research Scientist in the field of polymer sciences. During his professional career Dr. Meier published many scientific papers, received numerous honors and awards, consulted for a wide variety of companies and served as a visiting professor at universities in Japan, Poland and the U.S.

Dr. Meier had many hobbies including fly fishing and gardening. He especially loved raising bromeliads in his green house.  An accomplished woodworker, he created many beautiful works of art and furniture for the family home. His work was exhibited at the Midland Center for the Arts, Northwood Gallery and Creative 360. He was very active, playing handball at the Community Center and roller blading on the Rail Trail until he was 87 years old.   

Dale is survived by his brother Donal Meier; two daughters, Janet Boyd (Brent) of Calgary, AB Canada and Carol Meier of Midland; two grandsons, Eric and Alex Boyd, of Calgary; and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his wife of 71 years, Helen Meier, in April 2020 and his parents, Joe and Ellen Meier.  

In accordance with Dale’s wishes. Cremation has taken place and there will be no services. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Chippewa Nature Center, Midland Center for Arts or United Way of Midland County. Arrangements have been entrusted to the care of the Ware Smith Woolever Funeral Directors. 


Penny Jennings, UCLA Chemistry & Biochemistry,