Dale Earl Hostetter, 91, entered eternal rest on Sunday, Aug. 13, 2023, from WellSpan/GSH in Lebanon. He was the widower of Thelma Blauch Hostetter, who died Nov. 23, 2019, to whom he had been married for 69 years.
Dale, the 10th of 12 children of the late Albert Henry and Mary Susan Light Hostetter, was born April 18, 1932, on his parents’ farm in Bellegrove, where he lived and worked until he purchased the neighboring farm, moved a half mile away in 1962, and lived there for the remainder of his life.
He began his dairying career early in life, milking cows by hand every morning before school. Little did he know how valuable this experience would be, as many years later, he won the hand milking contest several times at the county fair, accumulating twice the amount of milk as the second-place finisher. He attended the South Bellegrove School, a one-room school, completing the eighth grade in 1946. As young adults, he and his brother, Sonny (Albert L.), were avid raccoon hunters. He also enjoyed hunting small game and white-tailed deer.
Dale was a dedicated and knowledgeable farmer and cattle dealer. He made countless trips to Wisconsin throughout the years to purchase top-quality registered and grade Holstein dairy cows for private sale and for auction at New Holland Sales Stables, where he was a stockholder for nearly 30 years. Some of the cows went as far as California, New Mexico, Florida, and Iowa. He also exported several dozen bulls to buyers from foreign countries, such as Germany, Holland, France, Italy, Belgium, Russia, and Saudi Arabia. Dale and his family enjoyed raising show cattle, with which they won numerous trophies and prestigious awards at the Lebanon Area Fair and other shows, including the Eastern National Show in Harrisburg. He served as a delegate to the National Holstein Convention 12 times. And in 2012, he was named to the Pennsylvania Holstein Association Hall of Fame.
Over the years, Dale was an important part of Em-Tran, Inc., when it was at the height of its business in Elizabethtown, PA, supplying as many as 1,000 recipient heifers per year for embryo transfer. He also served as a North Annville Township Supervisor for 36 years (1970-2006) and was a faithful member of St. John’s E.C. Church and Sunday School in Steelstown.
In addition to his wife and parents, Dale was predeceased by his 11 siblings: four brothers, Elvin, and his first wife, Grace Blauch Hostetter, and second wife, Martha Keyton Hostetter, Albert L. (Sonny), and his wife, Jane Early Hostetter Shuey, Carl, young child Henry Hostetter, and seven sisters, Mildred, and husband, Roy Blauch, Iva June, and husband, Irwin Early, Marion, and husband, Warren Barnhart, Arlene, and husband, J. Henry Meyer, Betty Hostetter, infant Dora Hostetter, and Mary, and husband, Kenneth Buffenmeyer. He was also preceded in death by a grandson, Nevin Hostetter; a great-grandson, Justin Case; and a great-great-grandson, infant Oliver Hostetter.
Dale is survived by three sons, Ernest, husband of Gail Leonard Hostetter, of East Hanover Township, Calvin, husband of Eileen Kurtz Hostetter, of Somerset County, and Alan, husband of Robin Mumma Hostetter, of Bellegrove; one daughter, Brenda, wife of Ron Wolfe, of Bellegrove; 16 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren; two step-great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandson, Dean Hostetter, whom he had yet to meet; one sister-in-law, Mary Fansler Hostetter, widow of Carl; and dozens of nieces, nephews, and extended family.
A public viewing will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 18, 2023, at Kreamer Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., 618 E. Main St., Annville, PA 17003. An additional public viewing will be held from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 19, 2023, at St. John’s E.C. Church, 683 Steelstown Road, Annville, PA 17003. Funeral Services will begin at 11 a.m. on Saturday at the Church.