C. Dale Pope

April 10, 1939March 15, 2013

C. Dale Pope - Obituary C. Dale Pope, 73, of Merritt Island, Florida, passed away on Friday, March 15, 2013. The younger of two children, Dale was born in Vick, Arkansas. The family moved to Warren where he graduated from high school. He later earned his industrial engineering degree from the University of Arkansas. Upon graduation, he moved to Florida to pursue a career in aerospace. In 1965 he signed on with NASA at the Kennedy Space Center where he had a rewarding career beginning with the Apollo program. He earned his MBA from the University of Central Florida and concluded his career with NASA during the Space Shuttle program. After his retirement in 1997, he continued volunteering with NASA as a VIP escort for launches and landings. He said that the most exciting time in his life was the four years he spent on a special assignment with the FBI.

Dale met the love of his life, Suzanne Baker, in 1981. They enjoyed traveling around the world together. Dale lived an active life as an avid surfer, fisherman, and diver. His love of gardening was enjoyed by all. Every spring his friends and family looked forward to all the delicious tomatoes and peppers from his garden. He was also a history buff who enjoyed learning about the Civil War and antique guns. He was known to his friends for his clever sense of humor and playing little jokes on them.

Dale has always had a generous heart. He will be remembered by those whom he has helped over the years. He has assisted his nieces in pursuing their education, has stepped in on many occasions to be a father figure to young people and has helped the community by being a great supporter of the Salvation Army and Goodwill. Dale will be greatly missed by family and friends.

Dale was preceded in death by his parents Carl Bernard Pope and Vernie Maysell Smith Pope. He is survived by his love of 32 years, Suzanne Baker of Merritt Island, FL; his sister, Mary Gann of Little Rock, AR; nephew Randall Wayne Williams of Conway, AR; niece Libby (Williams) Baxley (Roy) of Sheridan, AR; nephew Steven Dale Gann (Judith) of Port St. Lucie, FL; great-niece Kelly (Baxley) Vaught (Eric) of Hickory Ridge, AR; great-nephew Robert Baxley of Sheridan, AR; great-niece Amanda (Gann) Davenport (Brad) of Columbus, GA; great-niece Holly Gann of Washington D.C.; great-nephew Steven Gann Jr. of Port St. Lucie, FL.; great-great nieces and nephews Sam Vaught, Baxley Vaught, Sawyer Vaught, Gavin Baxley and Gracie Davenport.

A memorial service will be held at 1:00 pm on Thursday, March 21st at Unity Church of Merritt Island located at 4725 N. Courtenay Parkway, Merritt Island, FL 32953.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to CHDC Volunteer Services, Att: Sally Sellers, 150 E. Siebenmorgen Road, Conway, AR 72032 or a charity of your choice.


  • Memorial Service Thursday, March 21, 2013

C. Dale Pope

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Rosalie Bianco

April 14, 2013

Blessings of all shapes and sizes as Dale continues his journey into the Light that he Is. And to you Susanne, may you take comfort in the knowing that you and I are with him in that Light. We are with him and he is with us.

Dixie Dyer

March 27, 2013

Susie I am so sorry for your loss. I have been thinking about you everyday, glad your family was able to be there for you. May God bless you with peace and comfort. Blessings
Dixie Dyer

Marlene Satterthwaite

March 27, 2013

Suzanne--I have such fond memories of Dale while we worked together as volunteers touring and escorting the astronaut familes. He was so much fun and always the perfect gentleman....we will miss him....he was such a great guy! So sorry to hear he has left us -- my prayers and condolences!

Dorman Woodall

March 27, 2013

Dale and I were high school classmates in Warren. I saw Dale from time to time at our WHS class reunions. The last time I saw him was in October of 2007. We spent some time together then, more than usual, and I enjoyed his company very much. I will miss Dale.

March 24, 2013

Dale was kind gentleman to work with. I know after retirement he remained a strong supporter of the Shuttle Program. Jim Johnson

March 23, 2013

Suzanne, I am so sorry for your loss. He was such a great person to work with at Kennedy. He assisted me on several occasions in scheduling training events into the LCC. Our prayers are with you and family members

Bet Eldred (Merritt Island, FL).

Karin Biega

March 22, 2013

Dale was one of the nicest guy I ever worked with at NASA; he taught me so much about the Shuttle Program and how to share it with our guests. Sending you prayers Suzanne.

March 22, 2013

Susie: Prayers are with you all at this time. I am so sorry for your loss. Just remember that Dale was a friend to all, and take comfort with all your memories of him! He will be missed! I am sorry I was unable to attend the memorial service.
Bill Wilson former NASA IT member

Billie Gabriel

March 21, 2013

Suzanne, having just returned from Dales memorial service it is so clear that he had many good friends. You do too, and we all send love and light as you handle your loss in your own way. Billie and Gabe Gabriel, Scott and Mary Gabriel and Sue and Mike Ebey

Delores Abraham

March 21, 2013

Dale was a kind human being, always there to offer his support to our NASA Guest Operations Team, he will be missed.
Delores Abraham